Italian Radio Station Sentenced to Pay Overdue Neighboring rights

The Court of Milan, with ruling notified on August 2, 2015 sentenced that the nation wide known station radio RTL is obliged to pay to SCF, the Italian consortium of  record producers a sum equal to 2% of the gross receipts.

The judges of the court of Milan have ruled in the context of disputes brought by SCF in 2009 against the major Italian national radio networks. This past April SCF has reached an agreement with other broadcasters involved and judgment continued only against RTL that has not adhered to these arrangements.

The Court, after repeating the substantive and procedural legitimacy of SCF, sentenced  that in the absence of other agreements between the parties, the extent of the compensation for the direct disk or similar device due to the manufacturer in accordance with art. 73 L.A. is equal to 2% of the proceeds.

What is the Artist's Resale Right?

The artist's resale right an “inalienable” right granted, in some jurisdictions,  to artists or their heirs to receive a compensation on the resale of their works of art. This right is often known by its French name droit de suite.

The directive 2001/84/EC of the European Parliament creates a right under European Union law for artists to receive royalties on their works when these are resold.  Member States may set a minimum sale price below which the artist's resale right will not apply: this threshold may not be more than 3,000 euros or 10,000 euros where the seller acquired the work of art directly from the artist less than three years before the resale.

The Artist’s Resale Right applies to the sale of artworks in the European Economic Area (EEA).  Artists who are nationals of these countries are therefore generally eligible to receive resale royalties.

Eleven European Union countries currently recognize “droit de suite” in their legislation. United Kingdom, Ireland, Austria and the Netherlands being still an exception. Of the eleven countries which recognize this right, only eight actually do collect the royalty.

The law applies to all “works of graphic and plastic arts”. Works of art must be original and the criteria for the original status of engravings, prints and lithographs are defined in agreements between the authors’ societies and auctioneers.

In Italy this right is granted to artists and their heirs for seventy years after his death on the occasion of transactions of works of art or manuscripts in which intervenes a professional art market. In particular, are subject to “droit de suite” all acts of resale, if they involve vendors, buyers or intermediaries represented by art market professionals, such as salesrooms, art galleries and art dealers in general, with the exception of sales between private individuals. The sales must be reported, by the professional acted as the seller or buyer broker, by declaration to the SIAE, within the period of ninety days from the sale. , the submission of the sale proceeds and compensation for all subsequent sales, are entirely charged to the seller.

The organization in charge of collecting the right below on behalf of all the artists is the SIAE, which currently governs the rights of authors affiliated companies, in which the royalty is already in force.

The compensation is calculated on the sale price, net of tax, on a percentage basis differentiated in relation to the different echelons, are calculated as follows:

•4% for the portion of the sale price up to  50,000.00 euros; (*)

•3% for the portion of the sale price of between 50,000.01 and 200,000.00 euros;

•1% for the portion of the sale price of between 200,000.01 and 350,000.00 euros;

•0.5% for the portion of the sale price of between 350.000,01 and 500,000.00 euros;

•0.25% for the portion of the sale price exceeding 500,000.00 euros.

The total amount of compensation cannot be still greater than 12,500.00 euros.

The SIAE, appointed in Italy to collect payments on the resale right for the artists, published in the Official Gazette a large list of authors whose works have been the subject of a sale which led to the maturation of the resale right, for which, however, has not yet been claimed that right. The gap between the real amount of droit de suite percentage on the sales and the amounts duly paid to the artists and their heirs shows how difficult is to effectively implement this European principle. 

By Francesca Filipo

Creative Commons : Ideas Worth Spreading.

An inflexible copyright policy that prevents any type of disclosure could be anachronistic in the digital era. To realize the full potential of the Internet, encouraging a spreading creativity, many possibilities have been thought. Many of them have been just utopian, but one of these showed a revolutionary potential.

That’s the so called “Creative Commons”.

Launched in 2001 by Lawrence Lessig, Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and one of the leading experts of Copyright Law, this project achieved a large success and a wide application in the recent years.

Creative Commons licenses are not against copyright, instead they depend on the existence of copyright. These licenses are legal tools that creators and other rights holders can choose to offer certain usage rights to the public, while reserving some other rights.

Those who want to make their work available to the public for limited uses while preserving their copyright may want to consider using CC licenses. Others who want to reserve all of their rights under copyright law wouldn’t choose to use it. Creative Commons licenses offer creators a wide spectrum of choices between keeping all rights and renouncing all rights (public domain), an approach that we call "Some Rights Reserved."

Creators can choose among different protection regimes. While some of them refrain commercial uses or the sharing of adaptations, others grant just a minimum protection consisting in the paternity right.  The author doesn’t need any authorization or permission before licensing his work under CC, he just has to decide which conditions he wants to apply to his work. Accordingly, each work will be shared with a different disclaimer, an user friendly detailed tag.

Creative Commons is not an alternative to collecting societies, but a no-profit organization. Therefore all licenses can be use for free with any authorization requirements.

In Italy  Creative Commons could be perceived as an obstacle as it could be interpreted as incompatible with the authority granted by the Italian Copyright Law of 1942 to SIAE, the legal monopolistic society for the management of copyright in Italy.

The recent Directive 2014/26/EU states, however, the principle that rights holders should be able to freely choose to entrust the protection of their works to the collective management bodies they consider most appropriate, also to independent management entities, regardless of the state of nationality. The Directive also grants the authors the right to divide the protection of their works between different collecting societies.

The new standards should promote the coexistence of the CC licenses with the traditional collecting societies, to create a more flexible and efficient system of protection.

This system thought by Lessig affirms a belief in copyright, because it is in essence a copyright license, but it also affirms the innate value of those digital environments where the rules of exchange are not necessarily defined by economic criteria.

What is Digital Watermarking and How it Works.

Digital Watermarking is defined as non detectable marking on images, videos, 3D data, audio or text. They can be read by computer assisted methods. Digital Watermarking may contain several different watermarks simultaneously.

Digital Watermarking is used for different purposes. Digital Watermarking helps in the prosecution of copyright infringement. Unlike metadata, Digital Watermarking directly interwoven with the content to be marked, with steganographic methods. In the case of the robust watermark this integration ensures that the elimination of the watermark makes it unusable.

In various research and development projects that focused initially on the area that processes have been developed mainly for commercially relevant content such as audio and video data and 3D models. There are also Digital Watermarking methods such as for marking databases, musical notes, still images and text.

Occasionally, semi-transparent overlays in images or videos, for example, logos or copyright information, mistakenly referred to as digital watermarking. The usage is misleading, as that neither the carrier (image or video) might not necessarily be available in digital form, the Digital Watermarking is read out digitally. A superimposed semitransparent photo lettering is clearly traceable to the origin, without any need of digital technology.

Digital Watermarking has different characteristics; perceptibility denotes the influencing of the quality of the labeled content, robustness, detectability are other points.

The nature of the embedded message is determined by the application. This can be, for example, in the case of the proof of authorship, information regarding the copyright owner. In the general case metadata is embedded; Unique identification number of the contents similar to the ISBN is used in those cases.

Both classes of methods – digital watermarking and digital fingerprinting – belong to the class of passive protection mechanisms. In contrast to active defense mechanisms, such as encryption which is used to prevent unauthorized access to the content.

A special class of Digital Watermarking are reversible Digital Watermarking techniques. Here, the embedded Digital Watermarking can be removed and the original message can be recovered. This brings you the recovery information in addition to the newly introduced. Applications of this reversible Digital Watermarking technique is used in medical image processing.