In this article, I challenge this dominant narrative on the purpose of copyright law in Nigeria not because it is wrong, but because it has eclipsed the fundamental purpose of copyright law, which essentially is an attempt to balance the interests of the creators’ desire for financial reward and the users’ access to creative works to encourage the creation and dissemination of cultural works for societal benefit. In other words, the purpose of copyright law is to fairly manage the rights of the creator to earn rewards for his creativity and the right of the users to access information. I critique the understanding of the purpose of copyright law in Nigeria and whether the understanding of the underlying rationale for copyright law in Nigeria aligns with the purpose enshrined in the first copyright law (the Statute of Anne) enacted over three centuries ago. As the first copyright law, it necessarily implies that all other copyright legislation, including the current copyright law in Nigeria trace their legislative ancestry to the Statute of Anne.
Following the University of Cambridge and University of Aberdeen’s recent return of bronzes looted by British soldiers from Benin City, Southern Nigeria, in 1897, Dr. Titilayo Adebola is pleased to present this fireside chat with Professor Bankole Soidipo SAN. The University of Cambridge relinquished possession of a bronze cockerel “Okukor” after students campaign inspired the decision for it to be returned in November 2019. While the University of Aberdeen relinquished possession of a bronze depicting the head of an Oba of Benin after its approved repatriation in March 2021. Professor Sodipo was actively involved in facilitating the discussions and negotiations between the Nigerian stakeholders and British universities that culminated in the return of these Benin bronzes. Professor Sodipo was recently nominated (in October 2021) to be conferred with the prestigious rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria, of which official investiture will be in December 2021. He received his LLM from the University of Lagos and Ph.D from Queen Mary, University of London. He is a Professor of Law at Babcock University, where he has previously served as the Dean, Faculty of Law. He is the Senior Partner at G. O. Sodipo & Co.
The importance of technology transfer in holding together the links and processes of the global value chain tells us a lot about value accretion and control of the chains. The concept of the global value chain, especially as it is portrayed in documents like the Global Value Chain Development Report 2019 and in the 2020 World Bank’s Trading for Development in the Age of Global Value Chains is non-hierarchical.
The COVID-19 pandemic has raised salient questions about global intellectual property rights rules and their implementation at regional, sub-regional and national levels. These questions revolve around the tensions between private rights and the public interest. For example, how can governments employ flexibilities and other measures to facilitate access to pharmaceutical products including drugs, vaccines, test kits, personal protective equipment and related technologies? Or how can governments navigate the intersections of copyright and the right to education to promote access to educational materials for teaching and learning? Broader conceptual, practical, and institutional issues, foregrounded on fostering development-oriented intellectual property rights systems in the Global South, will be analysed from different perspectives.
Multi-Sided Music Platforms and the Law is a book that provides a well-informed, thorough and rigorous treatment of relevant legal issues from an African perspective, whilst never losing sight of the ‘broader picture’. As such, it is expected to benefit a diverse group of readers, as well as policy and law makers in Africa and abroad in tackling relevant legal conundrums effectively.
The book titled Multi-Sided Music Platforms and the Law: Copyright, Law and Policy in Africa is a timely contribution to literature in this era, with regards to the music boom in Nigeria and other parts of Africa and the existence of music platforms for entertainment as well as commercial purposes. There is a voluminous scholarship in this book on law and multi-sided platforms generally on one hand and copyright law specifically on another. The author focused on the legal and regulatory issues that arise from the use of copyright-protected content by multi-sided platforms in digital advertising.
According to Professor Caroline Ncube in the foreword, this book is an important and timely contribution to the discussion of music platforms and is the first work that considers multi-sided platforms from the perspectives of copyright, competition and privacy under South African and Nigerian laws.
For a region like Africa and other less affluent regions, much dependence is placed on the possibility of borrowing copyrighted works from friends and families for access by persons who cannot afford purchasing their own copies. If the first sale doctrine and its accompanying benefits for access to works “vanish”, dissemination of digital works by way of lending becomes restricted.