Copyright is an exclusive right conferred by the government on the creator of original literary or artistic works such as books, articles, drawings, photographs, musical compositions, recordings, films and computer programs.
The copyrights Act, 2000 recognizes the above rights in Bangladesh. The enjoyment of copyright does not depend upon any formalities like registration.
Although there are provisions for registration of copyright, but it does not differ a work from any unregistered work. Copyright in a work automatically exist as soon as the work comes into existence, if the work is original.
Which works can get Copyright protection
The Copyright Act, 2000 and Section 15 deals with the works in which the copyright exist, which states that copyright shall subsist in the following classes of the works-
- Original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works;
- Cinematographic films; and
- Sound recording.
In order to be protected, a copyright must satisfy the following condition except in case of foreign works-
- The Work is first published in Bangladesh.
- Where the work is first published outside Bangladesh, the author must be a citizen of Bangladesh at the date of publication of the work.
- In case of unpublished work, the author is on the date of the making of the work a citizen of Bangladesh or domiciled in Bangladesh. But this requirment is not applicable to the work architecture.
- In Case of an architectural work of art, the work is located in Bangladesh.
The terms of Copyright
Section 24 to 32 of the copyright act, 2000 deals with the terms of the copyright. The term of copyright depends and varies according to the nature of the concerned work.
Section 24 provides that, in case of any literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work (other than a photograph), when published within the lifetime of the author, copyright shall subsist during the lifetime plus sixty years from the year of the death of the author.
In the case of a work of joint authorship, 60 years shall be computed from the year of the death of the author who dies last.
Section 25 specifies the terms of copyright for posthumous works as 60 years from the date of it’s publication. Section 26 states that, in the case of a cinematograph film, copyright shall subsist until sixty years from the year of its first publication.
Under Section 27, in the case of a sound recording and Photograph copyright shall subsist until sixty years from the year of it’s first publication. Section 28A of the said Act stipulates that, in case of computer related programs, the copyright shall subsist for sixty years from the year of it’s first publication.
In the case of a literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work (other than a photograph), which anonymously or pseudonymously, copyright shall subsist until sixty years from the beginning of the calendar year next following the year in which the work is first published.
In the case of awork, where a public undertaking is the first owner of the copyright therein, copyright shall subsist until sixty years from the beginning of the calendar year next following the year in which the work is first published under section 31.
In the case of a work of an international organisation to which the provision of section 41 apply, copyright shall subsist until sixty years from the beginning of the calendar year next following the year in which the work is first published under section 32 of the copyright act.
Remedies against the Infringement of copyright
An author of a work has three types of remedy in case of infringement of his copyright, i.e. Civil remedy, criminal remedy and administrative. Civil remedy means to obtain an injunction, or damages, or infringement copy by the way of filing suit in the court of District Judge.
Criminal remedy implies to initiate criminal proceeding against the person who has commited an offence under the provisions of this act.
Administrative remedy means to seek remedy from the registrar of copyright under section 74 of this act. The act protects both the economic and moral rights of the author.
The economic rights must be excercised within the specified limits, but the moral rights can be exercised even after the expiration of the limitation of after the transfer. Section 71 to 74 discuss about the infringement of copyright.
Copyright registration and copyright office
Section 55 to 61 of this act deals with the registration of copyright. It is important to note here that the registration of any work is not mandatory for enjoying copyright or for enforcing the copyright in case violation.
The registration under the copyright act is voluntary. The certificate issued by the registrar constitutes prima-facie evidence of ownership of copyright.
The Copyright Act, 2000 in Bangladesh is very emerging and socaial secured in author. Now for this fullfillment of this act authors are feel very protective about their works.
The author must have bestowed upon the work, the significant judgement, skill and labor or capital. It is immaterial whether the work is wise or foolish, accurate or inaccurate, or whether it has any artistic or literary merit or value.