Caetano Veloso invited me, while exchanging e-mails, to meet a group of people that, according to him, had been studying copyright law greatly and had some ideas different to mine. I always enjoyed a good conversation and accepted his invitation, despite not believing that good ideas can come from people influenced by “Vanisa Santiago”. Continue reading
Category Archives: Brazilian Copyright Act
The Brazilian government announced a new Minister of Culture: what about the end of the copyright reform?
The president Dilma Rousseff announced this Tuesday that Ana de Hollanda no longer is the Minister of Culture in Brazil. The hard task of dealing who such affairs – including the reform of the Copyright Act – now pertains to Marta Suplicy, which is a former mayor of São Paulo.
The Brazilian music public performance collection society – ECAD – is under heavy fire. In June, 2011 a Congressional Investigation at the Brazilian Senate was triggered to investigate several alleged frauds by ECAD. The investigation started after several complaints regarding ECAD’s lack of transparency, excessive collection and lack of criteria to determine and distribute the collected amounts. One of the complaints, for example, said that an employee of one of the associations that form ECAD (there are 9 in total) used the name of a bus driver to receive more than US$ 75,000.00 due to songwriters and performers.
As a result of the 10-month investigation, with several hearings and the collection of a vast amount of documents, a 350-page report, with more than 3 thousand exhibits was produced. It is a lot to read and to digest. By the end of the day, though, the document requests the indictment of 15 people who are – or were – part of ECAD and of the associations that form ECAD for a number of different crimes, such as misappropriation of funds, auditing fraud, formation of cartel and unjust enrichment. Continue reading
My last post was about a new bill that wants to profoundly change the Brazilian Copyright Act (to the worse, in my view). However, I found that a less ambitious – but still very troubling – bill was introduced last December 13th by Congressman Luciano Castro of the Republic Party of the State of Roraima (Northern Region of Brazil) which aims to limit the term of assignment of rights in copyright-related contracts. The bill received number 2910/2011 and, on January 31st, 2012, it was sent to the Committees of (i) Education and Culture, (ii) Constitution and Justice and (iii) Citizenry for approval. If approved, the bill will continue its path through Congress.
Currently, the Copyright Act does not provide for any limitation on the term of assignments and licenses. Section 49 of the Act determines that assignment can only take place in writing and that a total, unrestricted transfer is possible, with the obvious exceptions of the moral rights of the authors. The same Section further determines that, in the absence of a written contractual provision, the maximum term of the assignment will be deemed to be of 5 years. Continue reading
If you read this blog, you know I follow closely the development of the pre-bill of Copyright Act which is currently being analyzed by the Civil House of the President of the Republic for possible remittance to Congress.
However, apparently, Congressman Nazareno Fonteles from the Labor Party of the state of Piauí (Northeastern region of Brazil) got tired of waiting and decided to present his own bill to change the Copyright Act (Bill no. 31331/12). In principle, this is a smart move because shorter bills have better chances of going faster before Congress. However, his bill is basically a “copy and paste” of everything that is wrong with the pre-bill of Copyright Act proposed by the Ministry of Culture. Worse yet, it is a “copy and paste” of prior versions of the pre-bill which were clearly designed to make copyright flexible to the users, yielding less protection to the content creators and owners. Continue reading
Last week, the House of Representatives approved the proposal to amend the Federal Constitution and grant tax exemption to CDs and DVDs containing music from Brazilian authors or music interpreted by Brazilian musicians in general.
If further approved by the Senate and sanctioned by the President, the above proposal will cause a considerable reduction on the sales prices of CDs and DVDs. The intention is basically to ensure access to more consumers and, as a result, curb piracy. Continue reading