Yuan (2006)

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Film and motion pictures Sound recording and music publishing Photographic activities PR and communication Software publishing (including video games) Specialised design Television programmes Translation and interpretation

1. Relationship between protection (subject matter/term/scope) and supply/economic development/growth/welfare 2. Relationship between creative process and protection - what motivates creators (e.g. attribution; control; remuneration; time allocation)? 3. Harmony of interest assumption between authors and publishers (creators and producers/investors) 4. Effects of protection on industry structure (e.g. oligopolies; competition; economics of superstars; business models; technology adoption) 5. Understanding consumption/use (e.g. determinants of unlawful behaviour; user-generated content; social media)

A. Nature and Scope of exclusive rights (hyperlinking/browsing; reproduction right) B. Exceptions (distinguish innovation and public policy purposes; open-ended/closed list; commercial/non-commercial distinction) C. Mass digitisation/orphan works (non-use; extended collective licensing) D. Licensing and Business models (collecting societies; meta data; exchanges/hubs; windowing; crossborder availability) E. Fair remuneration (levies; copyright contracts) F. Enforcement (quantifying infringement; criminal sanctions; intermediary liability; graduated response; litigation and court data; commercial/non-commercial distinction; education and awareness)

Source Details

Yuan (2006)
Title: A better copyright system? Comparing welfare of indefinitely renewable copyright versus fixed-length copyright
Author(s): Michael Y. Yuan
Year: 2006
Citation: Yuan, Michael Y. A better copyright system? comparing welfare of indefinitely renewable copyright versus fixed-length copyright. Econ. Innov. New Techn. 15.6 (2006): 519-542.
Link(s): Definitive
Key Related Studies:
Discipline:
Linked by:
About the Data
Data Description: This study compares two copyright systems: one of fixed term copyright and one of infinitely renewable copyright. The authors propose an economic model to ascertain the optimum level of copyright. The study also utilises a literature review of studies from 1985 to 2005.
Data Type: Secondary data
Secondary Data Sources:
Data Collection Methods:
Data Analysis Methods:
Industry(ies):
Country(ies):
Cross Country Study?: Yes
Comparative Study?: Yes
Literature review?: No
Government or policy study?: No
Time Period(s) of Collection:
  • 1985-2005
Funder(s):
  • Robert William University Research Foundation

Abstract

This study models and simulates fixed-length copyright (FLC) and indefinitely renewable copyright (IRC) and compares their social welfare. Evidence is found suggesting that IRC has lower maximal social welfare than FLC does. This difference can be explained by the way copyright duration is determined. Copyright duration represents the balance between encouraging creation and reducing restrictions on the consumption of information products. Under FLC, copyright duration is chosen directly by legislation; under IRC, it is induced indirectly through a copyright fee. However, the imposition of a copyright fee distorts the behavior of creators and thus decreases social welfare.

Main Results of the Study

This study models the market of information products under FLC and under IRC. The models describe competition in both creation and production of information products and capture the decisions on pricing, number of first-copy products, and entry of creators. The simulations showthat IRC can increase social welfare if the copyright length ofFLCis not set optimally and is within certain range of excessive length. However, if both FLC and IRC can be configured optimally, then IRC reduces social welfare. It is suggested that IRC is the third-best solution and FLC is the second-best solution to the problem of high creative cost and low reproduction cost of information products. Under FLC, copyright length is set directly to balance the needs of encouraging creation and reducing restrictions on consumption. IRC attempts to indirectly induce a copyright length through a copyright fee. However, the fee distorts the behavior of the creators.

Policy Implications as Stated By Author

  • Fixed length copyright (FLC) may have higher social welfare than Infinitely Renewable Copyright (IRC) if FLC is configured optimally (at far lower than the current life plus 70 years in many jurisdictions).
  • A fee to re-register copyright in IRC would limit the number of re-registrations and may lead to less works in copyright overall, leading to greater social welfare for consumers.


Coverage of Study

Coverage of Fundamental Issues
Issue Included within Study
Relationship between protection (subject matter/term/scope) and supply/economic development/growth/welfare
Green-tick.png
Relationship between creative process and protection - what motivates creators (e.g. attribution; control; remuneration; time allocation)?
Green-tick.png
Harmony of interest assumption between authors and publishers (creators and producers/investors)
Effects of protection on industry structure (e.g. oligopolies; competition; economics of superstars; business models; technology adoption)
Green-tick.png
Understanding consumption/use (e.g. determinants of unlawful behaviour; user-generated content; social media)
Coverage of Evidence Based Policies
Issue Included within Study
Nature and Scope of exclusive rights (hyperlinking/browsing; reproduction right)
Exceptions (distinguish innovation and public policy purposes; open-ended/closed list; commercial/non-commercial distinction)
Mass digitisation/orphan works (non-use; extended collective licensing)
Licensing and Business models (collecting societies; meta data; exchanges/hubs; windowing; crossborder availability)
Green-tick.png
Fair remuneration (levies; copyright contracts)
Enforcement (quantifying infringement; criminal sanctions; intermediary liability; graduated response; litigation and court data; commercial/non-commercial distinction; education and awareness)

Datasets

Sample size: 2
Level of aggregation: Copyright systems
Period of material under study: 1985 to 2005