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© Clearance Issues for Online Video Seminar on IP and Creative SMEs in the Digital Environment WIPO – 21 may 2008 Ted Shapiro (Senior Vice-President, General Counsel & Deputy MD, EMEA) A successful film industry of course depends on a wide range factors.

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clearance issues for online video

© Clearance Issues for Online Video

Seminar on IP and Creative SMEs in the Digital Environment

WIPO – 21 may 2008

Ted Shapiro (Senior Vice-President, General Counsel & Deputy MD, EMEA)


A successful film industry of course depends on a wide range factors.

One important factor relates not only to how copyright protects film but also how it regulates and permits the audio-visual sector to function….


The Complexity of Rights Clearance

  • What is rights clearance?
    • Securing rights for production and exploitation
    • Preventing third party claims
    • Consequences for failure to clear
  • Copyright and Related Rights (authors/performers etc)
  • Underlying works/Pre-Existing Content
    • Inclusion in new works or new uses of old works
    • E.g., books to films, clips on UGCs, old films on VOD
  • Personal: Rights of publicity, privacy and/or moral rights
  • Residuals (Guilds) and Remuneration (Statutory)
  • Music – particularly for online uses
  • Trademarks, Business names, Titles, Products, Locations
  • Orphans, Remakes, Sequels, Prequels,
  • Scope and nature of licenses particularly for new Internet services: territoriality, DRMs. (See also IFTA materials)
  • Related points: E&O insurance, co-production agreements, completions bonds, financiers, banks
  • International aspects – laws vary - e.g., exceptions

Focus for Today

  • Overview of AV © in the US and EU
  • Some Rights Clearance Issues for the Exploitation of Video on the Internet
    • VOD
    • Electronic Sell-Thru
    • New Modes of Retransmission
      • DTT
      • Mobile TV
      • IPTV
      • Internet
  • FIN

Exploitation of Rights by the Producer

  • European approaches (Transfer, Cessio Legis, by contract)
    • Producer gets exploitation rights
    • Remuneration and moral rights
  • US Work Made for Hire Doctrine (17 USC §§ 101, 201)
    • Collective bargaining – residuals and some “moral” rights
  • Producer may assign copyright to a distributor or license a number of companies (e.g., by territory, by language, by category of rights)
  • Producer responsible for securing necessary clearances
  • Producer aims to position film in best competitive position in order to cover costs, pay everyone, to secure return on investment and to create new works.
    • Film released in different formats in a sequential order (windows) to get maximum return.
    • Very few films make money in the theatrical release
    • Bulk of return has been home video
    • New Modes/Piracy….are challenging existing practices!!!!
delivery 2 emerging models
Delivery – 2 emerging models*
  • Electronic Sell-Thru (EST)(aka Digital-To-Own):
    • On-demand transmission of an AV work in an encoded file for download via DRM technology
    • consumer is authorised to retain a permanent copy (initially on hard drive or similar device and potentially for burning onto an optical disk)
    • unlimited use/playback.
  • Video On-demand (VOD):
    • On-demand content transmission for limited viewing period via DRM technology
    • no permanent copy being retained by the consumer
    • content received via streaming or self-erasing download

*indicative only

vod and est some legal issues
VOD and EST – Some legal issues
  • Electronic Sell-Thru (Digital to own) & Video On-Demand
    • What exclusive rights are involved?
      • Making available – WCT Article 8
      • EUCD Article 3.2
      • In the US – Registrar of © but cf recent caselaw
      • Public Performance?
      • Reproduction?
    • New modes of exploitation – do you have the rights?
      • “for all media now known or hereafter invented”
      • Bans on the licensing of unknown uses
        • German CA §31.4 – REPEALED
        • New §31a – transitional provisions, right of revocation (not an issue for AV), mandatory collective admin for old contracts
  • How do you remunerate for distribution via UGCs? Clips,
  • Other Issues:
    • Exhaustion (Art 3.3 EUCD – First Sale Doctrine in US 17 USC §109)
    • Exceptions/DRM (Art 6 EUCD – DMCA Section 1201 )
    • Interoperability
vod and est clearing the music
VOD and EST – Clearing the music?
  • What rights are required for music in film?
    • Reproduction (exception for temporary copies)??
    • Communication to the Public – Public Performance???
    • Making Available -- interactive services
  • Who is the owner of those rights?
    • Pre-existing/specifically created - Composers/Publishers
  • Rights Acquisition by Producers
    • Contract and/or
    • Statutory (work made for hire, cessiolegisor presumption of transfer)
  • Which Law Applies? What about mandatory rules?
  • Buyouts and local collecting societies
  • US is a single territory (ASCAP, BMI, Harry Fox, contractual freedom)
  • Music licensing in the EU is undergoing a lot of change…
new modes of retransmission
New Modes of Retransmission
  • Cable retransmission (and Satellite)
    • Mandatory collective exercise of rights
    • Role of initial broadcasters
    • EC Cable & Satellite Directive (Art 9/10)
    • US Compulsory License (17 USC §§ 111, 119 and 122)
    • Berne Convention Article 11bis(2)
  • New modes of Retransmission
    • IPTV
    • Digital Terrestrial TV
    • Mobile TV
    • Internet TV
    • Exclusive rights or mandatory collective exercise or compulsory license
    • Territorial scope?
    • Simulcast issues


some tips
Some Tips
  • Continual process
  • Start Early
  • Document
  • Research
    • lots of sources online
  • Document
  • Monitor
  • Document
  • Legal advice
  • Risk Assessment
  • Consequences/Cost

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