Monday, 18 January 2016

Peruvian collective society received more than a thumb down

From Peru we heard that the Institute of anti-competition and intellectual property (INDECOPI) has sanctioned a collective society for copyright infringement and violation of the Law on Performers (Law No. 2813).

Image result for thumb downThe INDECOPI’s Copyright Commission delivered the sanction (Resolution 421-2015 / CDA-Indecop), a monetary fine of UIT (tax units), against INTER ARTIS Peru due to “not submitting documentation that would determine the rates set by that entity, [and by not] complying with the principles of reasonableness, equity and proportionality set out in the Law on Copyright.” Moreover, the rate applied by INTER ARTIS was not been “established in agreement with the partnership of audio-visual performers and producers” in accordance with the correspondent Laws (copyright and performers rights respectively).

Collective societies are private and non-profit organizations which look after the defence of the economic rights of its members. They collect and distribute copyright royalties from users. These societies require prior authorization by the government. There are seven collecting societies in Peru regulated by INDECOPI. Some of them are: APDAYC (authors/composers of musical work); UNIMPRO (phonogram producers); EGEDA (audio-visual producers); and APSAV (visual artist), among others.

Collective societies are usually involved in rights management and thus, may grant rights on behalf of rights holders. The collecting society then will charge a fee for such licence. First, the collective society will deduct an administrative charge and then distribute the royalties to the right holders. In the case in question it appears that the collective society was not clear and transparent in the most crucial issues. It is then reasonable that they were penalize, but should this be the end of this? Collective societies look after the ‘defence’ of the members i.e. creators/authors and the question is: can they be trusted by its members? A monetary sanction is just that, ‘money’ and I think that they should be another type of perhaps no penalty as such but amendments that the INTER ARTIS need and should comply with. It is said that they are regulated by INDECOPI, but is this just delimited on punishment sanctions. Perhaps this procedure and practice can be explained by INDECOPI or a Peruvian lawyer working in the field – can you address this blog and its readers to certain minimum standards that a Peruvian collective society must have and if there is a regulation that governs them.

For more information in regards to Peru’s IPRs see the factsheet provide free of charge by the Latin America IPR SME Helpdesk here.

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