Intellectual Property and related rights

Question 1
Please answer ALL parts
1 a)
Critically discuss the introduction of Database Right into law in the European Union following Directive 96/9 EC.
1 b)
Sioned is an artist whose work involves combining objects and people in particular environments – these are referred to as “installations” in the art world. Typically her work might involve the construction of an object from everyday articles such as desks, computer screens and items of household equipment, held together by a structure created by Sioned out of wood, steel or plastic.
These constructed objects sometimes resemble human or animal forms, or look like houses or natural features. They are not constructed to be permanent. What Sioned does is to build the object at a chosen location, and then take photographs and video of it in that location, together with people. The photographs form a record of the work and are on display in galleries around the country, as well as being reproduced in books and magazines.
Sometimes the people are standing still and the only record of the installation is the photography, but movement and sound form part of some of Sioned’s installations. One example was a piece commissioned by Cardiff Council to publicise the National Eisteddfod, which will be held in Cardiff bay in 2017. This involved a structure resembling a choir of singers constructed from refrigerators together with a number of actors, each contained within a sound-proof glass box, singing a selection of traditional Welsh folk songs (that could not be heard). It was called “Hiraeth” (“hiraeth” is a Welsh word meaning nostalgic longing). Video footage of the installation was taken and a continuous loop of this video, together with still photographs of the installation, is now on show in the Tate Modern gallery in London, with Sioned credited as the artist.
(i) Discuss the intellectual property rights that may exist in “Hiraeth” and in Sioned’s art in general.
“Hiraeth” resulted in quite a lot of positive and negative criticism because of its association with the Eisteddfod. This was good for Sioned’s career, and she has received several new commissions. However, Sioned became concerned that some features of his work are being used for commercial purposes and she is not happy about that.
The gothic rock group “Toxic Wardrobe” have issued a video with their latest song “Belladonna”. This features members of the group singing noiselessly inside glass boxes (“Belladonna” is a purely instrumental piece). The boxes are arranged in a waste disposal site, in the section that houses refrigerators awaiting safe destruction. Sioned complained publicly about this in a magazine interview, and Toxic Wardrobe responded on their blog saying that Sioned was clearly out of touch with the real world. This argument attracted the interest of the national press, and the Sunday Cuppa magazine ran a story about it. This story featured reproductions of Sioned’s still photographs of “Hiraeth” and stills from the “Belladonna” video. The story included some commentary from leading art and cultural critic Ray Thomas. Sioned is not concerned at the content of the story, but is upset because the reproductions of her work at small scale and poor quality in the magazine,
alongside advertisements for cars and nappies, completely removes the artistic context necessary to fully appreciate it.
(ii) Explain whether there is anything Sioned can do about the activities of Toxic Wardrobe and the Sunday Cuppa.
Question 2
Please answer ALL parts
a)
Critically evaluate the right of authors to object to the derogatory treatment of their works pursuant to ss. 80-83 CDPA 1988.
b)
Tribute band Parachute play cover versions of the legendary 1970’s psychedelic rock band Cress and other similar bands of the time. They also play some of their own original material, which is in the psychedelic style. Their manager, Kyle, takes care to arrange all the necessary permissions in relation to the original music for their gigs. All the band members are Welsh.
In 2015 they toured Eastern Europe, visiting various countries both inside and outside the EU including Hungary and Belarus. They asked their friend Branwen to tour with them and make a film of the tour. Branwen has now finished the post-production work and the world premiere of the film in London is due to happen soon.
Also in 2015 film-maker Roland was making a film about Hungary in the 1970s, a time at which Western music was not approved of in Hungary. Some bands did play Western style psychedelic rock in underground clubs, but they were subject to political persecution. A theme of Roland’s film is the interaction between art, music and politics. Roland decided to shoot his film in the style of a documentary and shot one scene at a Parachute gig in Budapest. The focus of this scene is an argument between the two main characters, but the band can be clearly seen and the music clearly heard in it. During the scene two songs are played, the Cress song “Unicorn”, and “Allegro” which was written by Parachute’s drummer, Chopper.
Roland could not find a distributor for his film and so in 2016 launched a DVD himself. Last month Chopper found out about the DVD when he saw copies of it DVD on sale at a record store in Cardiff. It included the club scene featuring Parachute. Most of the band members object to this on principle as they feel the band’s work is being exploited without the band receiving any reward, and this will interfere with the launch of Branwen’s film, which is imminent. Chopper, however, takes a much more relaxed view and believes that the publicity they will gain from the video will be beneficial to them in the long term. The shop owner told Chopper that the DVD had been purchased from a distributor in Paris
(i) Advise the band members about what rights they will have to stop sales of Roland’s DVD
After the Eastern European tour, Chopper left the band. The remaining band members now have a further problem. They tell you that Belarussian hip-hop artist Mad Igor did a set at a club in Minsk on the same night as Parachute performed there, and was impressed with their music. Igor asked if
he could use Branwen’s recording of their song “Allegro” in one of his songs. The band agreed, provided that their input was acknowledged. Igor’s latest song has been released and is available for download from a number of sites. One of the numbers is “Beetroot”, which makes use of Branwen’s recording of “Allegro”. The CD cover acknowledges Parachute as the performers and Chopper as the composer and lyricist. Beetroot contains violently misogynistic lyrics which Igor has skilfully mixed with the song so that, in part, the original words (which are sung by Sarah, the band’s bassist) make up the message of the song. Sarah is deeply angry that her voice is being used to express Igor’s views and would like to prevent the song from being available. Chopper has lost interest in music and does not care about this issue.
(ii) Advise Sarah and the other remaining band members what rights they may have

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