15 April, 2024

How to obtain a copyright for a book in Ukraine?

Insights
8 minutes

For every author, a book is the result of hard work, creative research and an invested soul. That is why it is so important to protect your intellectual property from illegal use and plagiarism. This is where copyright comes in.

Copyright in a book arises automatically from the moment of its creation and does not require registration. However, obtaining a copyright certificate is an additional proof of your authorship and can greatly facilitate the protection of your rights in case of disputes.

In this article, we will review the main aspects of book copyright in Ukraine, in particular: what is protected by copyright, how to register a book copyright, what are the ways to protect copyright and how to get qualified legal assistance in this area;

What is protected by copyright?

Copyright applies to a wide range of works that are the result of human creativity. In the context of a book, the objects of copyright can be:

  • Text of the work: plot, characters, dialogues, presentation style, etc.
  • Illustrations: drawings, photos, graphic elements.
  • Book design: cover, layout, fonts.
  • Book translation: if the translation is the result of the translator’s creative work.

It is important to distinguish between an idea and its expression. Copyright protects the form of expression of an idea, not the idea itself. For example, the idea of writing a detective novel is not protected by copyright, but the specific text of the novel with its plot, characters and dialogue is already subject to copyright.

Copyright in a work grants the author the exclusive right to use the work in any form and by any means. This includes:

  • Right to reproduce: book publication, reprinting, copying.
  • Right to distribute: sale, gift, exchange.
  • The right to public performance: reading excerpts from the book in public.
  • The right to translate: translation of the book into other languages.
  • The right to adapt: creation of derivative works based on a book (film, play).

Copyright is an important tool for protecting intellectual property and stimulating creative activity. It provides authors with remuneration for their work and contributes to the development of culture and science.

Copyright registration for a book

Although copyright in a work arises automatically from the moment it is created, copyright registration is an important step to prove authorship and protect your rights.

In Ukraine, copyright registration is carried out by the Ukrainian Agency of Copyright and Related Rights (UACRR). There are two ways to register:

  • Traditional method: submission of the application and necessary documents in paper form to the UAACP.
  • Online registration: submission of application and documents through the UAACP electronic service.

To register copyright in a book, you will need the following documents:

  • Application for copyright registration.
  • A copy of a work (book) in paper or electronic form.
  • A document confirming payment of the registration fee.

Copyright registration has a number of advantages:

  • Certificate of authorship:A copyright registration certificate is an official document that confirms your authorship of a work.
  • Evidence base:In case of disputes over authorship, the registration certificate is a strong evidence in court.
  • Possibility of concluding licence agreements: copyright registration simplifies the process of concluding agreements for the use of a work by other persons.
  • International protection:Copyright registration in Ukraine provides a certain level of protection in other countries that are parties to international copyright treaties.

Online copyright registration is a convenient and fast way to get official confirmation of your authorship of a book. The registration procedure is quite simple and does not require significant time and effort.

Protect your book – register your copyright!

Copyright protection for a book

After copyright registration, it is important to take steps to protect your book from illegal use. Here are some ways to protect it:

  • Using the copyright logo (©): placing the © symbol on a book along with your name and the year of first publication is a common way to communicate copyright. Although it is not mandatory, the copyright logo helps to deter potential infringers.
  • Monitoring the use of your book: monitor how your book is used, whether illegal copies of it appear on the Internet or on the market.
  • Contacting the infringer: if you have discovered a case of copyright infringement, the first step may be to directly contact the infringer with a request to stop the illegal use of your book.
  • Out-of-court Settlement: in some cases, it may be appropriate to consider out-of-court settlement, for example, through negotiation or mediation.
  • Judicial remedies: if the copyright infringement is serious or the infringer is unwilling to cooperate, you should go to court to protect your rights.

Legal assistance is extremely important in case of copyright infringement. A qualified lawyer will help you:

  • Assess the situation and determine whether there is a violation.
  • Choose the most effective protection strategy.
  • Prepare the necessary documents and appeals.
  • Represent your interests in court.

In addition to judicial protection, there are other ways to protect copyright:

  • Licensing agreements: You can grant others the right to use your book under certain conditions, such as a fee or royalty.
  • Use of technical protection: there are special programs for e-books that make it difficult to copy and distribute them.

Remember that copyright protection is an ongoing process. Be vigilant and do not hesitate to seek legal support in case of violations.

Conclusions

Copyright in a book is not just a legal term, but a guarantee of protection of your creative work and intellectual property. Copyright registration and taking measures to protect it will help you avoid plagiarism, ensure recognition of your authorship and receive remuneration for your work.

Polikarpov Law Firm offers a wide range of services in the field of copyright:

  • Advice on book copyright issues.
  • Assistance in copyright registration.
  • Drafting and analysing licence agreements.
  • Copyright protection in court.
  • Representation of authors and publishers.

Our lawyers have in-depth knowledge of copyright law and many years of experience in successfully protecting clients’ rights. We will help you to understand all the legal intricacies and ensure reliable protection of your book.

Contact our law firm and we will help you to preserve and increase the value of your creativity!

What elements of the book are protected by copyright?

Copyright protects a wide range of elements of a book that are creative expressions of the author. The main elements protected by copyright include:

  1. Text Content: it is the written words, phrases, sentences, paragraphs, and sections of the book that are copyrighted.
  2. Graphic elements: this may include illustrations, drawings, maps, charts, diagrams, graphs, photographs and other graphics that are created by the author.
  3. Concept and Structure: the original book idea, plot, script, characters, artistic imagery, chronology of events, plot twists, and any other creative elements that form the structure and concept of the book.
  4. Dialogues and dialects: if a book contains dialogues between characters or uses a particular dialect, these textual expressions may also be protected by copyright.
  5. Design Items: these can be cover design, text placement, fonts, colours, indents, section dividers and other design elements that are part of the book.
  6. Bibliographic data: this includes information about the publisher, year of publication, and any other important metadata about the book.

These elements are protected by copyright automatically when the work is created and do not require registration. Copyright gives the author exclusive rights to use, distribute, reproduce and modify these elements and can be used to protect intellectual property from unlawful use by others.

How long do book copyrights last in Ukraine?

In Ukraine, the term of copyright on a book is determined by the legislation on copyright and neighbouring rights. In general, copyright in a book lasts for the life of the author and another 70 years after his death. This term is known as the “general term of copyright”.

So, if the author has died, his copyright on the book continues for another 70 years after his death. After this period expires, the book passes into the public domain, that is, it becomes public domain and can be freely used by all without restriction.

Can I translate a book into other languages without the author's permission?

No, you cannot translate a book into other languages without prior permission from the author or copyright holder. Translating a book into other languages is the creation of a derivative work that is protected by copyright. This means that the translator is creating a new work based on the original text and therefore requires permission from the author or copyright holder of the original text.

Without the consent of the author or copyright holder of a book, translating it into other languages would be an infringement of copyright. Such an act may result in legal consequences, including claims for copyright infringement and claims for damages.

Consequently, to translate a book into other languages, you must obtain prior written permission from the author or copyright holder.

What if my book has been illegally published or distributed without my permission?

If your book has been illegally published or distributed without your permission, there are several steps you can take to protect your copyright and resolve the situation:

  1. Communicate with the distributor: try to communicate with the publisher or the person who distributed your book without authorisation. Sometimes this can be the result of misunderstanding or negligence. You can note that your copyright has been infringed and demand that the book be removed or stopped from being distributed.
  2. Request to Stop Infringement: If contacting the publisher or distributor fails, you can send a formal request to stop the infringement. In this letter, state that your rights have been infringed and request that you stop further distribution or sale of the book.
  3. Referral to Legal Authorities: If infringement continues even after your request to stop infringement, you may need to refer to legal authorities. Contact a copyright attorney or lawyer who can provide you with legal assistance and advice on how to proceed.
  4. Judicial action: If all other attempts to resolve the situation outside of contract have failed, you can take legal action. In court, you will be able to seek damages for the infringement of your copyright and to stop further distribution of the book without your permission.

In general, it is important to act quickly and effectively to protect your copyright if your book is illegally published or distributed.

Resources
  1. Law of Ukraine “On Copyright and Related Rights”. Link.
  2. Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works. Link.
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