Monday, October 13, 2008

Copyright for Traditional Arts

" It's very difficult to request Copyright registration for Asmat Wood Carving! " that's the title of an article in Kompas last Sunday, 12 October. It also mentioned that efforts has been made to obtain Copyright registration in Indonesia and abroad but all in vain. Unfortunately, the article did not mention details like specific of the Creation i.e. title, characteristics etc, whether or not the Creation has been publicized, name of the applicant for Copyright. This article is surprising, because logically there should not be any problem to register parts of our national treasure like the Asmat Wood Carving in our country which already promulgated 4 Copyrights Laws including 3 amendments i.e. Law No. 6 Year 1982, amended by Law No.7 Year 1987, amended by Law No.12 Year 1997, amended by Law No.19 Year 2002. In order to know the fact of the matter, we need to know the definition of Copyright, Creation, Creator, according to Article 1 of the Copyright Law No.19 Year 2002, as follows :
1.A Copyright is an Exclusive Right of a Creator or Recipient of the Right to publicize and multiply a Creation or to permit others to do it based on valid laws;
2.A Creator is a person or several persons working together and inspired to make a Creation based on their own Thinking, Imagination,Creativity, which are manifested
in a special form and characteristic.
3.A Creation is any original work of a Creator in the fields of Science, Art and Literature;
4.A Holder of a Copyright is a Creator as Owner of the Creation, or other party which receive such right from the Creator, other party that receive a right from said
5.Publication is Reading, Broadcasting, Exhibiting, Distributing, or Circulating a Creation using any methods, including by Internet or any other ways, so that such Creation can be Read, Heard or Seen by other people;
Article 2 defined Copyright as an Exclusive Right of a Creator or Holder of Copyright
to publicize or multiple his/her Creation automatically after a Creation was made.
Article 6 defined that, unless proven otherwise, a Creator is a person who is registered in the Directorate General of Intellectual Property, or a person whose name is mentioned in a creation or publicized as the Creator of a Creation.
Article 10 stipulates about Creations whose Creators are unknown:
1.The state is the Copyright Holder of Prehistorical works, History, and other National cultural products;
2.The state is Copyright Holder of Folklore and Common people's cultural products
such as stories,tales,legends, babad, song, handicraft,choreography,calligraphy, dance and other works of arts;
3.In order to publicize or multiply Creation in Paragraph 2, a Foreigner must obtain
a prior permit from institution related to said matter;
Article 11 stipulates that if a Creation has been publicized but the Creator is unknown, the State will be its Copyright Holder for the interest of the Creator;

Based on the above, we can say that Copyright Registration is not the only way to protect a Creation, but for better protection and legitimate evidence, Copyright Registration is the best. For Traditional Work of Art, like the Asmat Wood Carving, application should be made by a Creator for example by the Chief of the Tribe. If there are several types of products, separate applications should be submitted for each types, mentioning specific characteristics of each type. The date and place of Creation and Publication (if already publicized) should be mentioned too.

Image: Wikipedia

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