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WIPO signs new treaty for cross platform performers

ISOC welcomes recognition of the interwebs

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A new treaty for the rights of audiovisual performers has been finalised by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) after 12 years of negotiations.

The treaty will give performers, for the first time, protection in the digital environment.

The new treaty, brokered in Beijing, will when implemented allow performers to share international audiovisual revenue with producers as well as grant performers moral rights over copyright or distortion of their performances.

The idea is to safeguard the rights of performers against the unauthorized use of their performances across platforms including television, film, video and the Internet.

ISOC welcomed the treaty but urged for WIPO members to take into “critical” account the effects of the “Internet and the digital revolution.”

“Coherent policies at national and international levels are needed to minimize uncertainty for Internet intermediaries and other stakeholders, and to foster Internet access and use, online innovation, investment, competition, and the free flow of information across borders,” ISOC said.

Australia was represented in Beijing by officials from the Attorney-General’s Department and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Screen Producers Association of Australia and the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance.

The Australian Government is expected to conduct a public consultation process to consider ratification of the treaty.

The act was signed by 131 WIPO member states and the treaty by 46 member states.

The treaty will enter into force once it has been ratified by 30 eligible parties, including countries or certain intergovernmental organisations. WIPO Director General Francis Gurry said the treaty was an important milestone toward closing the gap in the international rights system for audiovisual performers. “The international copyright framework will no longer discriminate against one set of performers,” he added. ®

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