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What is entitled to copyright protection in Nigeria

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5. What will be entitled to copyright protection in Nigeria? 5.1. Section 1 of the Copyright Act states very categorically that the following will be eligible for copyright protection in Nigeria: 5.1.1. Literary works irrespective of literary quality which fall under the under listed categories: 5.1.1.1. Novels. Stories and poetic works; 5.1.1.2. Plays, stage directions, film scenarios and broadcasting scripts; 5.1.1.3. Choreographic works; 5.1.1.4. Computer programmes; 5.1.1.5. Text-Books, treatises, histories, biographies, essays and articles; 5.1.1.6. encyclopedias, dictionaries, directories and anthologies; 5.1.1.7. letters, reports and memoranda; 5.1.1.8. lectures, addresses and sermons; 5.1.1.9. Law reports, excluding decisions of courts; 5.1.1.10. Written tables or compilations. 5.1.2. Any musical work irrespective of musical quality and includes works composed for musical accompaniment. 5.1.3. Artistic works which irrespective of quality fall under any of the following categories: 5.1.3.1. Paintings, drawings, etchings, lithographs, woodcuts, engraving and prints; 5.1.3.2. Maps, plans and diagram’s; 5.1.3.3. Works of sculpture; 5.1.3.4. Photographs not comprised in a cinematograph film; 5.1.3.5. Works of architecture in the form of buildings and models; 5.1.3.6. Works of artistic craftsmanship and also pictorial woven tissues and articles of applied handicraft and industrial art. 3.1.4 Cinematograph Film: This includes the first fixation of a sequence of visual images capable of being shown as a moving picture and of being the subject of reproduction and includes the recording of a sound track associated with the cinematograph film. 3.1.5 Sound Recordings: This is defined as the first fixation of a sequence of sound capable of being perceived aurally and of being reproduced but does not include a sound track associated with a cinematograph film. 3.1.6 Broadcast: This is a sound or television broadcast by wireless telegraphy or wire or both or by satellite or cable programmes and includes re-broadcast. 6. Is this list exhaustive? What if I have an idea? 6.1. Yes it is, unless if falls under any of the above headings no other kind of work will be eligible for copyright. As a rule ideas are not protected only works. 7. Are there any eligibility requirements? When will a “Work” be deemed eligible for copyright? 7.1. Yes there are. The Copyright act states that for a literary, musical or artistic work to become eligible for copyright it must fulfill two basic criteria:- 7.1.1. Sufficient effort has been expended on making the work to give it an original character; 7.1.2. The work has been in any definite medium of expression now known or later to be developed from which it can be perceived, reproduced or otherwise communicated either directly or with the aid of any machine or device. 8. Is one expected to meet both criteria or just one of them will suffice to support a claim for copyright infringement? 8.1. Both are mutually exclusive, you will have to meet both criteria to be eligible. 9. How are these determined? For example, when will sufficient effort be deemed to have been expended on the work to give it “original character”? 9.1. The reality is that there are no determining criteria espoused by the Act. Most of the literature on the subject is obtained from case law [court decisions] and the views of various writers on the subject. 9.2. Generally sufficient effort will be deemed to have been expended on the work to give it original character where there is evidence to show that some industry and knowledge has been applied and the work was not copied from another person's work. 9.3. The second requirement has even less literature on the subject, and till date there is no recorded court pronouncement on the issue. 10. Are there any works that will be deemed non-eligible for copyright protection? 10.1. Although not specifically listed in the Act, yes there are. For example, Artistic works which at the time they were made were intended by the Author to be used as a model or pattern to be multiplied by any industrial process will not be eligible.







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