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case study of Taiwan's copyright law reform

A long journey toward intellectual property protection [electronic resource] : A case study of Taiwan’s copyright law reform (China).

Thesis (Ph.D.)–University of Missouri – Columbia, 2001.
online access from Digital Dissertation Consortium

This study examines the development of copyright protection in Taiwan, from cultural, political, historical and legal points of view and from a variety of sources, including in-depth personal interviews with government officials, lawyers, scholars and officers of intellectual property protection organizations who have either participated in Taiwan’s copyright reform or in the copyright negotiations with the United States. This study also explores underlying factors behind Taiwan’s copyright revolution from the perspectives of press theories and intellectual property theories.
 The author finds that copyright infringement of foreign and domestic works were rampant in Taiwan throughout the second half of the twentieth century because of several historical factors: political, legal, and economic concerns. But lack of the concept of copyright or intellectual property in general in the society was the underpinning factor. In other words, there has been a huge cultural difference between the West and Taiwan in the aspect of intellectual property protection throughout the history of their respective civilizations. This helps explain why copyright piracy was not a concern among the Taiwanese citizens and the Taiwan government until the United States started to pressure Taiwan for improvement with the threat of trade sanctions. Forces behind Taiwan’s copyright reform included external/foreign pressure as well as internal/domestic forces.
 In addition to providing a comprehensive history and analysis of the copyright dispute between the United States and Taiwan and creating a whole new understanding of Taiwan’s copyright reform and the copyright disputes between the two nations, this study also reveals that underlying the comprehensive history of the copyright disputes between the United States and Taiwan, there are the missing elements within the literature about policy toward intellectual property rights in a free or controlled press/speech system. And those elements are important in helping scholars more comprehensively understand how each press/speech system is conceived and operates.
 Most previous literature that discusses free and controlled press systems does not comprehensively explain the importance of intellectual property rights within each tradition. This study suggests that literature should include more intellectual property rights traditions in understanding both press/speech systems.

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