Copyright in the Digital Age | Disini Law Office
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Copyright in the Digital Age

Speakers from the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) and Philippine Association of the Record Industry (PARI) shared developments to copyright and other related rights during the COVID-19 pandemic in Copyright and The Digital Domain, a talk organized by Disini Law in partnership with Digital Freedom Network conducted last 20 August 2020.

“Efficient management of copyright and related rights is a must in the digital age, more than ever,” said IPOPHL Director General Rowel Barba. IPOPHL is the government agency which administers and implements State policies on intellectual property in order to strengthen the protection of IP rights in the country. Barba gave a rundown of services offered by IPOPHL, such as the accreditation of collective management organizations and an online system for depositing copyrighted works.

The IPOPHL has been aggressively tackling an increase in piracy as the country is placed on lockdown. “From March to June, our enforcement office received a total of 67 complaints for various IP rights violating acts. The figure already exceeds the 47 we received for the entire 2019.” 

Following the issue of intellectual property violations and piracy, it was only proper to discuss the music industry which has constantly been the object of piracy. Instead of paying for albums on sale, it was practice to illegally download music in order to enjoy it. This led to less revenue for those involved in the production of music. Albeit it was technology that allowed for piracy to happen in the first place, the evolution of technology had actually managed to put a stop to it in this digital age.

“The first thing we need to understand is that the evolution of music has always been about technology,” Attorney Marivic Benedicto from PARI emphasized. PARI is an association of local and international recording companies or record producers in the Philippines which advocates the interests of the music industry. Despite the changes to technology, the music industry has continued to thrive. “Music is no longer owned, but is streamed or just used momentarily,” said Atty. Benedicto. Due to this change, piracy in music no longer exists, according to Atty. Benedicto.

Inspite of the changes in the music industry, one fact remains the same: “Music is still an emotional experience.” What music does to people and their emotions has not transformed, as it still is language from one’s heart. It is only the way music is consumed that has evolved over the years.

Copyright and The Digital Domain was part of Disini Law’s Digital Transformation Thursdays. Digital Transformation Thursdays is a webinar series which focuses on discussions of issues and problems encountered in the journey towards digital transformation. The free webinar was streamed and available through Disini Law Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/DisiniLaw/). For upcoming online events of Digital Transformation Thursdays, visit https://dtt.ph/.