Intellectual Property and Cultural Diversity: Two Views on the Relationship Between Market and Culture
Intellectual Property Law and Policy Journal, No. 26, 2010
Posted: 10 Sep 2009 Last revised: 19 Oct 2013
Date Written: September 8, 2009
This article scrutinizes the two main approaches to the role of intellectual property as a means of protection and promotion of cultural diversity in order to check their efficiency and impact on cultural diversity on the local, regional and global level. On the one side, the group of countries led by the United States advocates a free market approach without any state intervention. On the other side, the remaining countries, among them France and Canada, search for some form of protecting their domestic cultural industries against the dominance of foreign multinational enterprises in their national markets. The main aim of this Article is to draw attention to the sometimes overlooked drawbacks of each currently advocated solution. By identifying the weak points of both approaches, the Article attempts to point out their innate shortcomings and the necessity of preventing their negative consequences in order to efficiently achieve the adequate protection and promotion of cultural diversity. The Article concludes by stressing the importance of striking an appropriate and adequate balance between granting individual intellectual property rights on the one side and state interventions, such as screen quotas, taxes, subsides or other types of redistributive mechanisms and schemes, on the other, in searching for an efficient cultural policy to protect and promote cultural diversity on the local, regional and international level.
Keywords: cultural diversity, intellectual property, copyright policy, cultural policy, Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions
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