All The World’s A Stage, But What is A Dramatic Work?
24 Pages Posted: 21 Jan 2021
Date Written: September 2020
Modern conceptions of dramatic entertainment have expanded to include diverse and previously inconceivable forms. The elements of apparent spontaneity in popular television shows like MasterChef, The Amazing Race and The Voice appear to be at odds with the traditional requirements of a predetermined script—which is commonly understood to be necessary for copyright protection of a “dramatic work”. Other forms of performances such as improvisation theatre, animal acts, fireworks and synchronised drones only add to a cacophonous collection that do not fit into our current state of copyright law that demands categorical recognition of works. This article explores, through a comparative analysis of developments in a number of Commonwealth common law jurisdictions, what may and should qualify as a dramatic work in Singapore in the 21st century.
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