ADVOCATES OF THE CAMEROON BAR / OAPI ACCREDITED PATENT AND TRADEMARK ATTORNEYS / AGENTS
Under the OAPI, copyright is concerned with the protection of literary and artistic works. Copyright is therefore a property right, which subsists in various works, for example literary works, artistic works, musical works, sound recordings films and broadcast.
Copyright gives the owner of a work that is protected by copyright the exclusive right to do certain things in relation to the which include but are not limited to making a copy, broadcasting or giving a public performance. Anyone else who does any acts restricted by copyright without the permission of the copyright owner may be subject to legal action taken by the owner of the copyright for copyright infringement. However, ownership of copyright is alienable and it can be transferred to another or a licence may be granted by the owner to another, permitting him to do one or more specified acts with the work in question.
Copyright does not protect an idea; it is the expression of an idea that is protected i.e. a tangible form – painting, book etc. International protection of copyright works is affected mainly through two international conventions i.e. the Berne Copyright Convention and the Universal Copyright Convention . The United Kingdom is a member of both conventions. Both conventions lay down minimum standards of protection to be attained and reciprocity of protection between member countries.
The conventions have been responsible for the high level of harmony that now exist on the world stage. Therefore because of agreements under the conventions it is possible for a foreign citizen to take legal action in an OAPI member state for copyright infringement occurring there, as if he or she was a citizen of that state. The author of copyright is the person who creates the work in which copyright subsists, however, for some type of works, the author is the person by whom the arrangements necessary for the creation of the work are undertaken i.e. an employer.