Access to Knowledge: a guide for everyone Page: 30
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2. FAIRER LAWS AND ENFORCEMENT PRACTICES
species to a limited range control the food chain.'
This chapter begins by providing an outline of copyright and patent
law, and describing some of the ways in which these laws and the ways
in which they are enforced can impeded access to knowledge. The chap-
ter then goes on to look at intellectual property enforcement practices,
which can cut across copyright and patents.
The Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works
1886 is the first international treaty on copyright. The UK mooted the
idea of international cooperation and the early members were mainly
Western European countries (Belgium, Germany, France, Spain, Switzer-
land, Tunisia and the UK became members in 1887). The US only be-
came a member of the Berne Convention in 1989. The first Asian country
to become a member was Japan in 1899. The majority of the develop-
ing countries formally adopted the Berne Convention well into the 20th
Copyright originally protected only works that were in text form. The
Berne Convention expanded the works covered by copyright to include
many new areas such as cinematography, drawings, paintings, architec-
ture, sculpture, engravings, lithography, maps, plans, sketches, illustra-
tions, photographs, art works and music. TRIPS in 1995 and the WIPO
Copyright Treaty in 1996 expanded protection to software and databases.
The scope of the right itself has also been expanded. In the 19th
Century, the copyright owner enjoyed little more than protection against
verbatim copying of the work. The Berne Convention expanded this by
granting the copyright holder the right to authorise reproduction, trans-
lation, adaptation and communication to the public by broadcasting or
loudspeaker. TRIPS added to this, the right to authorise commercial
rental in respect of computer programs and cinematographic works. The
WIPO Copyright Treaty expanded the right of communication to the pub-
lic to include communication through the Internet.
Copyright protection is given only for a fixed period of time. Upon
expiry, the creation ceases to be protected and falls into the public do-
main. For literary works, the duration of protection initially granted by
the Berne Convention was the life of the author plus 7 years. In 1908,
this was extended to the life of the author plus 50 years. TRIPS and the
1 Rachagan, Sothi, Intellectual Property: A Balance of Rights. Asia Pacific Consumer, 43
& 44 2006, Nr. 1 & 2, p. 10.
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Noronha, Frederick & Malcolm, Jeremy. Access to Knowledge: a guide for everyone, text, 2010; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc33297/m1/40/: accessed December 9, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .