PhD Dissertation – PRC Copyright Reform

PhD Dissertation: 

China’s Copyright Reform for the Digitized World: 
Lessons and Prospects

中國的數字版權法改革:經驗與展望 

 DONG HAO

KEYWORDS 
Copyright, Legal Reform, Legal Transplantation, Right of Communication through Information Networks, ISP Liability, Intangible Medium, Public Domain

ABSTRACT
This thesis tries to answer the following basic questions: can we use moral reasons to justify specific suggestions or policy initiatives?  Can we summarize deep-seated reasons underlying the surface of the laws? Why did the lawmakers make mistakes?  What lessons we should learn from the first round of the Chinese copyright law reform?  Apart from the uncertain notion of “balance of interests”, can we identify any other more objective approaches to assess success or otherwise of the legal reform? 
 
Based on the review of the nature and features of Chinese copyright laws, this thesis reviews the first round of copyright reform for the digital age and summarizes lessons to be learned therefrom. The thesis also proposes further legal reform incorporating the theory of “intangible medium”, and suggests use of the theory of de facto public domain as a standard to assess proposals of legal reform, i.e. a good and balanced law for copyright protection in the digitized age should be pushing the de jure public domain closer to the de facto public domain…
 
 
Copyright © 2012 DONG HAO All Rights Reserved.
 

PhD Dissertation: 

China’s Copyright Reform for the Digitized World: 
Lessons and Prospects

中國的數字版權法改革:經驗與展望 

 DONG HAO

KEYWORDS 
Copyright, Legal Reform, Legal Transplantation, Right of Communication through Information Networks, ISP Liability, Intangible Medium, Public Domain

ABSTRACT
This thesis tries to answer the following basic questions: can we use moral reasons to justify specific suggestions or policy initiatives?  Can we summarize deep-seated reasons underlying the surface of the laws? Why did the lawmakers make mistakes?  What lessons we should learn from the first round of the Chinese copyright law reform?  Apart from the uncertain notion of “balance of interests”, can we identify any other more objective approaches to assess success or otherwise of the legal reform? 
 
Based on the review of the nature and features of Chinese copyright laws, this thesis reviews the first round of copyright reform for the digital age and summarizes lessons to be learned therefrom. The thesis also proposes further legal reform incorporating the theory of “intangible medium”, and suggests use of the theory of de facto public domain as a standard to assess proposals of legal reform, i.e. a good and balanced law for copyright protection in the digitized age should be pushing the de jure public domain closer to the de facto public domain…
 
 
Copyright © 2012 DONG HAO All Rights Reserved.
 

Orphan Work Problem under Chinese Copyright Law

 Orphan Works in the Context of Chinese Copyright Law:
A Comparative Research

DONG Hao

Abstract: "Orphan Works" means works whose copyright (if not expired) owners can hardly be located, hence the users may not exploit the works lawfully with the licenses issued by right owners. Discussions to this topic in the U.S. and Britain have been raised for years, and the Bills for orphan Works have been introduced to the U.S. congress several times. The dilemma of orphan works and abandon softwares also exists in the context of Chinese copyright system, and this phenomena may be more widespread because the history of Chinese copyright law in the recent 100 years are inconsistent, unsteady and intermittent. Furthermore, the current Chinese copyright system is of not mature enough. It not merely lacks solutions for  the orphan work problem, but also exists unreasonable provisions that may worsen it. Four factor should be considered when one is about to solve the problem: (1) comply with the three-step test; (2) based on existing legal system of the country; (3) minimize the cost of both right owners and users; (4) guarantee the predictability of the benifits and the obligations. Based on these four premises, this article critically reviewed the solutions in the U.S., Canada and Japan,  and then proposed a set of multi-method and integrated suggestion that suit to the features of Chinese copyright regime.

Keywords: 
orphan Work, statutory licence, compulsory licence, authorship, public domain

The paper (in Chinese, 21,000 words) has been accomplished in Nov. 2006, and it is continuously updating before the formal publication. If you need it, please conatct the author.

 


 

论著作权法中的孤儿作品问题董皓:一项基于比较法视角下的研究(摘要)

董皓

[摘要] “孤儿作品”是指因难以找到权利人而无法取得使用授权的作品。美国《2006孤儿作品法案》已被提交国会讨论。孤儿作品现象在中国同样存在且可能更为普遍,现行中国著作权法律体系不但没有为该问题的解决提供足够的制度资源,而且还存在着不合理的规则。在选择孤儿作品问题的治理方案时应考虑四个方面的因素,以它们为评价标准,综合各种解决模式的优长,结合中国体制的特点后,方可形成一套多模式并用的、中国的孤儿作品法律治理方案。

[关键词] 孤儿作品、法定许可、强制许可、作者、著作权

 Orphan Works in the Context of Chinese Copyright Law:
A Comparative Research

DONG Hao

Abstract: "Orphan Works" means works whose copyright (if not expired) owners can hardly be located, hence the users may not exploit the works lawfully with the licenses issued by right owners. Discussions to this topic in the U.S. and Britain have been raised for years, and the Bills for orphan Works have been introduced to the U.S. congress several times. The dilemma of orphan works and abandon softwares also exists in the context of Chinese copyright system, and this phenomena may be more widespread because the history of Chinese copyright law in the recent 100 years are inconsistent, unsteady and intermittent. Furthermore, the current Chinese copyright system is of not mature enough. It not merely lacks solutions for  the orphan work problem, but also exists unreasonable provisions that may worsen it. Four factor should be considered when one is about to solve the problem: (1) comply with the three-step test; (2) based on existing legal system of the country; (3) minimize the cost of both right owners and users; (4) guarantee the predictability of the benifits and the obligations. Based on these four premises, this article critically reviewed the solutions in the U.S., Canada and Japan,  and then proposed a set of multi-method and integrated suggestion that suit to the features of Chinese copyright regime.

Keywords: 
orphan Work, statutory licence, compulsory licence, authorship, public domain

The paper (in Chinese, 21,000 words) has been accomplished in Nov. 2006, and it is continuously updating before the formal publication. If you need it, please conatct the author.

 


 

论著作权法中的孤儿作品问题董皓:一项基于比较法视角下的研究(摘要)

董皓

[摘要] “孤儿作品”是指因难以找到权利人而无法取得使用授权的作品。美国《2006孤儿作品法案》已被提交国会讨论。孤儿作品现象在中国同样存在且可能更为普遍,现行中国著作权法律体系不但没有为该问题的解决提供足够的制度资源,而且还存在着不合理的规则。在选择孤儿作品问题的治理方案时应考虑四个方面的因素,以它们为评价标准,综合各种解决模式的优长,结合中国体制的特点后,方可形成一套多模式并用的、中国的孤儿作品法律治理方案。

[关键词] 孤儿作品、法定许可、强制许可、作者、著作权

ps: 全文约二万余字,初稿完成于2006年并不断更新中,此乃本豆最认真的作品之一,可惜一直没能有机会正式发表,如需要请联系作者。

Update 20121104: 全文已经发出,请点这里查看本文动笔于2006年,初稿完成于2008年并纳入本人论文《多元视角下的著作权法公共领域问题研究》,后经修改在2010年知识产权“南湖论坛”上作为主题发言。鉴于中国国家版权局《著作权法修正案》(草案)中提及孤儿作品问题,但真正深入的论述仍然十分罕见,特再次修改并全文发出,以便研究者和立法者予以批评和参考。

 

What is the Public Domain?

When I am presenting my research today, I find I have to clarify the Public Domain for myself and others in brief and clear sentences. Here it is.

 

Basically, Public Domain means the Domain that is out of the Private Right. It has many definitions such as the strict legal definition, broader definition and the multi-discipline ones.

 

When I am presenting my research today, I find I have to clarify the Public Domain for myself and others in brief and clear sentences. Here it is.

 

Basically, Public Domain means the Domain that is out of the Private Right. It has many definitions such as the strict legal definition, broader definition and the multi-discipline ones.

 

The Strict one, and it is a traditional one in the context of copyright law, is: A domain that any works falling Into it can be freely used by the public, and this domain should be able to logically derived from the regulation of copyright law.

 

The broader one is: A domain that contains anything that should not be controlled by the private owners, not just literary and music works, but also the facts, ideas, public owned lands and other properties and non-properties.

 

The multi-discipline ones are relevant to many aspects. For example: the public domain in the context of Jürgen Habermas’ political philosophy, the public goods in the sense of institutional economics, and others.

 

I had reviewed most of the relevant conceptions on this issue before and proposed my own definition either from the law or from the fact of the contemporary digitalized world. It is a combination of the de facto public domain and the de jure public domain. When I am doing legal interpretation, I will focus on the de jure public domain (It is mostly the strict legal one, but at the same time, the theories of the other definitions are included). When I am analyzing the reasons and obstacles of the legal reform, I will observe the de facto public domain. Then compare them, then look for the reasons why the de jure and the de facto has distinctions from each other. 

 

\My version of Public Domain is of cource standing on the Giant’s shoulders, and at the same time focusing on my research theme of Copyright Reform and Social Development … not my dissertation, but a longer and bigger plan of my research in the future.