By Sheikh Saiful Islam Rajib
It is repeatedly apparent in Bangladesh that lot of “creative talents” received an untimely and inhuman death because of poverty, even some time they died of lack of basic need such as food, shelter and medical treatment. However, in developed countries such as USA and UK creative/intellectual persons live a wealthy life. The most crucial reason behind such economic status of such people in Bangladesh is the absence of “intellectual property law” practice especially the “copyright law” since the trademark, patent and design law is generally practiced in standard level in corporate and business environment. Before denying the possibilities someone should consider the consequences of having “copyright”
Copyright law allows authors or originators to be financially remunerated for their talents and labours which they have been put in creating something original. The monetaryremuneration works as an motivation to them to continue their creation . The person or enterprise who holds the copyright is the only one legally able to reproduce, change, publish, sell, distribute, rent or perform the copyrighted material. With the lack of copyright protection, it will be easy for anyone to claim such work as their own and to exploit it without giving any recognition or compensation to the original creator.
Copyright law also protects the authors or originators of derivative (or new) works :For example- Dramatizations, translations, adaptations, abridgements, arrangement, and other alterations of literary or artistic works .
There is one of the reasons behind creation of copyright laws that it give authors or originators exclusive rights to their creation for a certain time which is at least lifetime of the creator plus 50-60 years( it varies in different countries).
The copyright laws is not only for the creator’s benefits, it benefits the public too. One of the purpose of copyright law is to promote “the progress of science , useful and recreational arts” . The public benefits in at least two ways: the authors and inventors continue creating original works that these authors or originators may not have developed if there is lack of copyright law and Secondly, these creations are freely usable by the public once the limited time has passed.
It should also be noted that authors and copyright holders are not necessarily the same people. The author or the creator of the work usually owns the copyright. However, if an employee created the work as part of a job, the employer automatically holds the copyright.Copyright laws give the copyright owner legal rights with important implications for those work thatcreates businesses to them. These include the exclusive right to make and distribute copies; sell, rent or license the work; display or perform the work publicly; and to create new works based on the original copyrighted work. So apparently copyright law helps to build business and commercial venture where thousands of people’s livelihoodsare involved.
In Bangladesh “Intellectual Property Law” draw its attention towards the government and that is why several statues enacted by Bangladesh Parliament. The government enacted separate extensive Law and Rules in relation to “copyright law ”and they are Copyright Act 2000 and Copyright Rules 2006. The above features shows the list of possibilities (not an exhaustive list) can be achieved only by accepting the facility of copyright law. So the intellectual and creative people out there what are you waiting for? Embrace copyright law and prosper in your life.
Copyright © Sheikh Saiful Islam Rajib 2014
The author is a lawyer in Bangladesh
currently working as an Associate at
S Hossain & Associates Law office, a law firm in Bangladesh.