The principal legislative provisions dealing with copyright in the UK are to be found in the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988. This Act followed on from the publication of the report of the Whitford Committee in 1977, which sought to address a number of the issues raised by ‘modern’ technology, which included photocopying, audio and video taping and computing. The Act brought about a number of specific changes including the improvement of remedies against pirates, a copyright in cable-casts and a reinforcement of the application of copyright for computer programs.
The provisions of the 1988 Act also put the UK in a position to ratify the Paris Revisions (1971) of the Berne Convention and of the Universal Copyright Convention.
Today, the 1988 Act has been bolstered by an outpouring of legislation from Europe, which has its roots in EC Council Resolution of 14 May 1992 on Increased Protection for Copyright and Neighbouring Rights.
A selection of the key copyright legislation can be found for ease of access below.
Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988
Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works – Paris Act of 24 July 1971
WIPO Copyright Treaty (adopted in Geneva on December 20, 1996)
The Artist’s Resale Right Regulations 2006
WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty (adopted in Geneva on 20 December 1996)
Directive 2009/24/EC of 23 April 2009 on the Legal Protection of Computer Programs