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Draft copyright law lodged

12 October 2010

The Economic Development Minister, Senator Alan Maclean, has lodged a draft law that is an important step in Jersey’s drive to be a more attractive centre for e-commerce.

The draft Intellectual Property (Unregistered Rights) (Jersey) Law will modernise a 100-year-old copyright law to reflect the internet age.

Senator Maclean said “Updating and improving this law, which is nearly 100 years old, is crucial if Jersey is to be seen as a serious player in the knowledge economy.

"It will modernise rights for the digital age and, by bringing Jersey in line with the most recent international standards for copyright, it will be a vital tool in our efforts to promote innovation in the Island and attract inward investment.”

Current copyright law in Jersey was devised in a time before the internet and even before television.

The creative industries, particularly software, computer games and electronic publishing, have shown impressive growth rates elsewhere. They are very active in the area of e-commerce and depend on copyright. It is hoped that updating Jersey’s law will encourage growth in the Island too because Jersey will be a safer place for the creative industries to locate and expand.

The Senator hopes it will help develop the conditions that will create new jobs in the Island.

The new law will give clearer rights to those who create and disseminate valuable content online. The rights for those who create things like music, newspapers, video games, books, paintings and films underpin how they get a reward for investing their time and/or money in that creativity.

The new law will also provide a better framework for users of creative content such as schools, consumers and businesses. There will be more things that people can clearly do without falling foul of copyright restrictions.

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