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International Copyright and the TV Format Industry
Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Commercial Law. Jönköping University, Jönköping International Business School, JIBS, Media Management and Transformation Centre.
2008 (English)In: IUR-Information, Vol. 2007, no 8, p. 4-12Article in journal (Other academic) Published
Abstract [en]

This article examines the limited, but growing, body of case law in various jurisdictions which has addressed the question of copyright protection for TV formats. Two broad approaches can be identified on the part of the courts involved: (1) to try to draw analogies or parallels between TV formats and plays or scripted dramas; or (2) to examine the nature of the TV format on its own merits, in terms of its original and identifiable structure and fixed elements. The first approach makes it very difficult to find copyright protection; the second has borne fruit in some of the cases. One possible reason for these divergent approaches may derive from the way in which the definition in the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works of 1886 of copyright ‘works’ has been implemented into national legislation. Where the national legislation defines a copyright work as one of a limited list of categories, the courts have been forced to take the ‘dramatic work’-analogy approach: in other words, to try to shoe-horn TV formats into a particular pre-defined box. On the other hand, where national copyright acts have more faithfully followed the Berne Convention illustrative list, there seems to be less of an intellectual challenge in finding potential subsistence of copyright. This article looks to see whether there are patterns in the international treatment, concluding with a discussion of the Scandinavian position, as well as some commercial implications for TV format producers and distributors at the licensing stage. This article is only concerned with subsistence of copyright, and does not address infringement in any detail.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Jönköping: Institutet för Utländsk Rätt , 2008. Vol. 2007, no 8, p. 4-12
Keyword [en]
TV formats, international format trade, copyright, international copyright
National Category
Law (excluding Law and Society)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-7353OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-7353DiVA, id: diva2:133638
Available from: 2009-01-13 Created: 2009-01-13 Last updated: 2009-03-17Bibliographically approved

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Humphreys, Edward

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf