The Legal Rights of an Author

The Legal Rights of an Author

Copyright consists of two different elements: the economic rights in the work and the moral rights of the author. Economic rights are a temporary property right that can be transferred by the author to other persons like any other property (although many countries require the transfer to take the form of a written contract). They are intended to allow the author or his owner to benefit financially from their creation and include the right to authorize the reproduction of the work in any form whatsoever (Article 9 of the Berne Convention)[1]. Authors of dramatic works (plays, etc.) also have the right to authorize the public performance of their works (Article 11 of the Berne Convention). Do authors still have copyright in the works they create? Even if an author has transferred his copyright in all formats and forever to a publisher without reserving a right of return, he may be able to claim his copyright under the “termination of transmission” provisions of the Copyright Act. These provisions allow for the termination of certain copyright contracts entered into by authors during their lifetime 35 years later. (In the case of contracts concluded before 1978, the agreements of the heirs designated by the authors may also be terminated.) Although this statutory right of termination exists regardless of whether or not it is mentioned in the transfer agreement (regardless of contractual language that purports to negate it), it is subject to significant exceptions and many complications. The main exceptions are works produced for rental, as mentioned above, and agreements allowing the creation of derivative works (which can be terminated to revoke the right to create new derivative works, but not to restrict the use of derivative works already created under the terms of the original agreement). Complications are related to timing, eligibility and notification. Termination of the broadcasting right can only take effect within a narrow period of five years (in most cases, 35 years after the initial agreement or publication).

It may only be exercised by the author or, if the perpetrator is deceased, by the surviving widow/widower and the author`s children and/or (if all or part of this group of heirs have died) the grandchildren or other survivors named in the law. To trigger the right, the majority of persons entitled to exercise the right must terminate it at least two years (but not more than ten) years before the date of termination. The Copyright Office has published rules that specify the exact information that must be included in a notice of termination. The Authors Alliance is dedicated to promoting authorship for the common good by supporting authors who write to be read. One way to do this is to help authors understand and manage the legal rights needed to make their works publicly available and reusable. To this end, this introduction to authorship and ownership will be followed by an additional analysis of options for authors who wish to be read and practical tools to help authors recover, preserve and manage their rights to disseminate their writings to the public. We will also complete the collection of resources referenced below. When a literary agent sells foreign rights for an author, the commission the literary agency takes (20%-25%) is usually much lower than that taken by an American publisher. Even if there is no undeserved book advance from a United States. The publisher uses the product, the payment of advances and royalties goes directly to the author. Publishers` policies and contracts vary widely.

A database called Sherpa Romeo provides a handy summary of many copyright policies and publishers` self-archiving. These policies and agreements are generally bound by the Author Information or Article Submissions section of a journal`s website. Keep in mind that publishers` policies change over time, and the terms stated on their websites often differ from the terms of their actual agreements, so it`s important to read the agreement itself. Related rights, often referred to as related rights, as a more direct translation of the French droit voisins, are property rights granted to persons who are not the “author” of the work in the creative sense of the term. These are generally performers, producers of phonograms (records, CDs, etc.), film producers (as opposed to directors or screenwriters) and broadcasters. Related rights are generally more restricted than copyright in civil law countries, although they may be equivalent in common law countries where both fall under the same concept of “copyright”.