With the development of the Internet at the end of the 21st century, mankind began to pay serious attention to the development and protection of the rights of authors of various works. Our country was no exception in this trend, and in 2011 Belarus adopted the Law «On Copyright and Related Rights», number 262. The law regulates relations arising in connection with the creation and use of works of science, literature and art (copyright), performances, phonograms, programs of broadcasting or cable broadcasting organizations (related rights). It should be noted that the author can be any natural person whose creative work has created a work. We will consider the main provisions of this law in the article below.
What is copyright?
Copyright (in the narrow sense) is the subjective right of the copyright holder to use a work of science, literature or art. In general, copyright is a very conditional name, because the law does not define it, but regulates and protects the rights of the copyright holder. Copyright applies to works provided those them: is the result of creative activity and exist in some objective form. Copyright applies to works of science, literature and art that are the result of creative activity, regardless of the purpose and dignity of the works, as well as the way they are expressed. Works can be expressed in one of the following forms: written, oral, sound or video recording, image, volumetric-spatial, electronic, including digital.
Exclusive right to an object of intellectual property
This issue is regulated by the Civil Code. Exclusive right implies the possibility of the copyright holder to reproduce the work in any way or transfer the reproduction right to third parties; publicly display and perform the work; translate, revise and arrange the work; to implement architectural and design projects; distribute copies of the work in any way: sell, rent.
What is copyrighted?
The objects of copyright are: literary works (books, brochures, articles, etc.); dramatic and musical-dramatic works, choreography and pantomime works and other script works; musical works with and without text; audiovisual works; works of fine art (sculpture, painting, graphics, lithography, etc.); works of applied art and design; works of architecture, urban planning and gardening art; photographic works, including works obtained by methods similar to photography; maps, plans, sketches, illustrations and plastic works related to geography, cartography and other sciences; computer programs; works of science (monographs, articles, reports, scientific lectures and reports, dissertations, design documentation).
Who can register copyright?
Copyright can be registered by the author himself, or by another person to whom the copyright holder of the work will issue a corresponding power of attorney. The procedure for registering copyright with the state patent authority in Belarus is provided only for computer programs. As a result of the procedure for registering a computer program, the applicant will receive a certificate from the National Center for Intellectual Property (NCIP) on the registration of a computer program, and the data on the program will be entered into the register of the department. In Belarus, you can deposit an object of copyright in a special organization of the Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry – «Belpatentservice». Registration of a computer program for applicants who are the author lasts from five to 20 calendar days, and costs from 180 and 282 rubles, respectively, for representatives who are not authors - from 84 to 540 rubles, respectively. If you need to extend the deposit of a previously registered program, then it costs 120 rubles for a period of 5 years. On the website of the Center online you can find information about previously registered programs from 2007 inclusive.
Conclusion of a license agreement in Belarus
To regulate all the intricacies of interaction between the author and the copyright holder, there is a license agreement. 1. Under a license agreement, the author or other copyright holder (licensor) grants the user (licensee) the right to use the object of copyright or related rights. The license agreement must provide for specific ways of using the copyright object. A license agreement is of two types: an exclusive license agreement and a simple license agreement. The difference between them is in the amount of rights granted to the licensee. The license agreement is assumed to be onerous, unless otherwise provided by this agreement. The remuneration is determined in the license agreement as a percentage of income for the corresponding way of using the copyright object, either in the form of a fixed amount or in another way. Also a mandatory component is the validity period of such an agreement. If the license agreement concluded by the author does not contain a term for its validity, then this agreement is considered concluded for three years. The conclusion of a license agreement on the granting of the right to use a computer program or database is allowed by the conclusion of each licensee with the corresponding licensor of an accession agreement, the terms of which are set forth on the purchased copy of the computer program or database or on the packaging of each copy or attached to each copy. The licensee begins to use such a computer program or database as consent to enter into an agreement.
Copyright registration procedure
The procedure for registering copyright with the state patent authority in the Republic of Belarus is provided only for computer programs. As a result of the procedure for registering a computer program, the applicant will receive a certificate from the National Center for Intellectual Property (NCIP) on the registration of a computer program, and the data on the program will be entered into the register of the department. There is also another version of the certification of authorship (including computer programs) on the territory of the Republic of Belarus - deposit (deposit) in an authorized organization. This is a way of publishing objects of copyright, confirming the authorship and primacy of their creation. In Belarus, you can deposit an object of copyright in a special organization of the Belarusian Chamber of Commerce and Industry ‒ Belpatentservice.
List of required documents for registration
Since in Belarus, the state patent authority has established only the procedure for registering computer programs, we will list the entire list of requirements for registering this particular type of work. To register a copyright for software, you must provide: information about the copyright holder and author; the name of the program; year of creation of the program; a computer program in electronic form on a tangible medium (CD, USB flash drive, etc.); printout of the source code of the program (in full, if the text contains no more than 50 pages; 25 first and 25 last pages, if the text contains more than 50 pages); printouts of the main screen forms (optional); description of the program: purpose, scope and its functionality, programming language, operating system, technical requirements for working with a computer program, etc .; documents (their certified copies) confirming the ownership of the exclusive right to the computer program to the Copyright Holder ‒ not the author; power of attorney addressed to the representative.
Copyright registration period
On average, copyright registration takes from a week to several months, depending on the registration method. Disputes in the field of intellectual property are within the competence of the Judicial Collegiums for Intellectual Property of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Belarus, as well as the Arbitration, Arbitration Courts and the international organization WIPO Center. All third parties are obliged to refrain from violating the rights of the author, and cannot use the work without the consent of the copyright holder. For the author, copyright is valid during his life and 50 years after death. It is inherited and can be transferred in whole or in part by agreement. The term of these rights under the contract is not established by law and is determined based on the terms of the contract.