All material subject to strictly enforced copyright laws. © 2022 Managing IP is part of the Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC group.

Thailand: Draft amendment to Copyright Act promises updated protections

Sponsored by tillekegibbins.png
patrick-dozkvhdyvhq-unsplash.jpg

Suebsiri Taweepon and Ploynapa Julagasigorn of Tilleke & Gibbins discuss the amendments to Thailand’s Copyright Act that copyright owners, legal practitioners and internet service providers should be aware of

The latest draft amendment of Thailand’s Copyright Act is continuing to progress through the legislative process after being approved by the cabinet in late 2020. The current draft of the law, which is likely to pass by the end of this year, contains significant revisions that copyright owners, legal practitioners, and internet service providers (ISPs) should note.

Photographic works: longer term of protections

Under current law, the term of protection for photographic works is 50 years from the work’s creation or first publication. The draft amendment of the Copyright Act extends this to be the lifetime of the author plus an additional 50 years.

This change would put Thailand’s protection for photographic works in line with the WIPO Copyright Treaty, of which Thailand is getting ready to be a member.

Online infringement: safe harbours and takedowns

While the current Copyright Act provides injunctive relief against online infringement for copyright owners, together with an exemption from infringement liability for ISPs, the mechanism for doing so has proved ineffective.

The new draft therefore replaces this mechanism with safe harbour provisions that exempt ISPs from liability for copyright infringement committed by users, as long as the ISPs comply properly – including by implementing the notice-and-takedown system.

The draft provides a detailed definition of ‘service providers’ and divides ISPs into intermediary ISPs, caching ISPs, hosting ISPs, and search engine ISPs. The draft’s definition of ‘users’ of ISPs includes anyone who uses an ISP’s service (paying or otherwise).

In order to be exempted from liability for copyright infringement for their provided services, an ISP must have explicitly announced (and complied with) a policy to terminate services to repeated infringers.

ISPs must also adopt the notice-and-takedown systema new addition by the draft. Under this system, which can be compared to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act in the US, copyright owners can send a notice of infringement (backed by evidence) to caching, hosting or search engine ISPs, informing them of any allegedly infringing data.

An ISP that has been notified is required to immediately take down the allegedly infringing data, its references, and access points from their system – or block access. The ISP must then notify the user who posted the material to allow him or her to oppose its removal. If the user responds with a counter-notice, the ISP must notify the copyright owner and confirm with the copyright owner whether to bring the relevant data back onto the system or maintain the takedown. Anyone who falsely files an initial notice or counter-notice is liable for any resulting damages.

Further details on the criteria, rules, and conditions for the notice and counter-notice procedures will come in additional regulations.

Technological protection measures

Technological protection measures (TPMs) are also defined more broadly in the draft, which identifies various TPM violations, prohibits providing services to circumvent TPMs, and imposes liability against manufacturers, sellers, or distributors of products, equipment, or services intended to circumvent TPMs.

Exceptions for each type of violation still exist, but the draft narrows their scope by specifying that the exact exceptions will be enumerated in forthcoming ministerial regulations. This is a more targeted approach than the current Copyright Act, under which the exception to liability arising from TPM circumvention only refers back to the exceptions for copyright infringement.

Takeaways

The draft amendment to the Copyright Act indicates that copyright owners will have more up-to-date tools to tackle online copyright infringement, while the safe harbor provisions should be a boon to ISPs that comply with the law.

By tracking the progress of this draft law and its subordinate regulations, these parties will be able to combat online copyright infringement in Thailand and lower their risk of liability.

 

Suebsiri TaweeponPartner, Tilleke & GibbinsE: suebsiri.t@tilleke.com Ploynapa JulagasigornAttorney-at-law, Tilleke & GibbinsE: ploynapa.j@tilleke.com

More from across our site

Lawyers should pay attention to APJs’ questions and remember that PTAB proceedings aren’t jury trials, say former PTAB judges
The USPTO cancelled ‘Galavava’ and 'Surfstar Wake' and partly cancelled ‘Heika’ this month
We have published all the 2022 rankings of the leading firms for patent litigation and protection work
In-house and private practice counsel say UK judges have raised the bar for preliminary injunction requests
António Campinos will serve another five years as EPO president – perhaps he’ll calm unrest at the office in that time
LGBTQ IP lawyers say using rainbow colours and posting solidarity messages on social media must be followed by concrete action
Brand owners bemoan counterfeiters’ latest wheeze and say enforcement authorities should get more involved
Counsel at Bayer, Novartis, a generics company and other firms debate what the WTO’s patent waiver will mean in the short and long term
The patent office report found that stakeholders were still divided over subject matter eligibility but broadly wanted clarity
The UKIPO published the results of its consultation on AI and IP today, June 28, and plans to shake up the rules on copyright and data
We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.
I agree