Copyright vs. Author's Right
Posted Aug 25, 2005 7:53 UTC (Thu) by cantsin
Parent article: On the defense of piracy enablers
Several posters suggested that Florian Mueller's arguments were based on
his background in a different, i.e. continental European legal system. This
is correct, and I just would like to back it with facts:
European law doesn't have copyright, but an author's
right ("droit d'auteur", "Urheberrecht", "auteursrecht"
- The crucial difference between author's right and
copyright is that author's right is
"inalienable", i.e. it can't be transferred from the author to another
party. If I - as a German - create a work, the author's right
will remain mine, and can't be owned by my publisher or employer, until its
expiration 70 years after my death.
- However, continental European
publishers and employers routinely circumvent the inalienability of
author's right by making the author/creator sign contracts
that grants them exclusive "representation" of their author's
right (similar to a lawyer representing the rights of a
- For authors/creators of free software and free content, the
author's right mostly provides advantages because, unless they
sign a contract, they are free to release their work under a free license,
and no employer can claim rights on it.
- The Blizzard case, however,
demonstrates advantages of Anglo-American copyright to
continental author's right. Another example is the policy that
developers of GNU software sign over copyright to the FSF. This is not
possible or legal within continental European legislation.
to post comments)