INDONESIA: Govt revising law on intellectual property rights
Government revises 2002 intellectual property rights law in order to establish collective management society to protect art
The Jakarta Post
Thursday, November 23, 2006
By Ridwan Max Sijabat
Jakarta --- The government is revising a 2002 law aimed at protecting the intellectual property rights of artists from rampant piracy, a senior official said Tuesday.
Ansori Sinungan, the intellectual property rights director-general at the Justice and Human Rights Ministry, said a draft law is being prepared to revise the current regulation.
It will include an additional chapter establishing a collective management society to protect art, he said.
"The collective management society will include artists, publishers and producers to collect royalties from users of registered artworks and distribute them to intellectual property rights owners," Ansori said at a seminar on intellectual property in Jakarta.
He added that the government would function as a facilitator and regulator.
Actors, singers, recording firms and law practitioners at the event supported the moves.
The seminar on intellectual property rights also featured Robert Strang, an official from the U.S. Justice Department.
Strang said his country had a collective management society to protect artists at home and overseas.
"Even now, the U.S. Justice Department and FBI have set up a special investigative team to handle computer and internet piracies and brought such cases to court," Strang said.
Arts workers said the anti-piracy operations launched by police were ineffective. They said this was partly due to vagueness in the existing law.
They complained piracy and the duplication of their works took place under the noses of law enforcers.
"Piracy and the copying our works has gone out of control in connection with the rapid development of information technology," composer Otto Hasibuan told the seminar.
"In the past, someone needed at least one hour to record 12 songs from a cassette. Now he/she can do hundreds of songs in MP3 or on compact discs simultaneously in minutes," composer Otto Hasibuan told the seminar.
The Indonesian Recording Companies Association (Asiri) along with composers, singers and music arrangers has said it frequently files complaints with police about piracy and the illegal use of artworks in public performances.
But most of them go unheeded, it added.
"I have composed many songs and they are sung by performers in public events. But I have many other sources of income. Many renowned composers, however, such as the late Ismail Marzuki, Cornel Simanjuntak and Gesang, have created locally and globally-known songs but have been left poor in their old age," said Otto.
Asiri executive officer Arnel Affandi said electronic equipment such as computers, the internet, cellular phones and VCDs have replaced cassettes, creating a convergence in the music industry.
Photos and songs can been easily found on CDs, VCDs and cellular phones, but in many cases they are used without permission from their owners, publishers or producers, he said.
"Telkom (the state telecommunications firm) and cellular phone providers should pay royalties to intellectual property rights holders of all songs used in cellular phone ring tones, ring-back tones and screens," Arnel said.
Date Posted: 11/23/2006