The Trinidad and Tobago Copyright Organisation (TTCO) at a news conference yesterday reiterated that it is a registered licensing body under the Copyright Act which has been operating since 2000.
This was in response to a recent article by the Copyright Music Organisation of Trinidad and Tobago, (COTT) asking its members to “be wary of rogue and fly by night” copyright organisations who are offering copyright licences to promoters of events at discounted prices”.
While COTT did not name the “fly by night” organisations, at its news conference at the at Trinidad and Tobago Coalition of Services Industries (TTCI), Cornelio Street, Woodbrook, TTCO’s vice president, Richard Cornwall, said his organisation is a bona fide organisation recognised by both the Ministry of Legal Affairs through its Intellectual Property Division and the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service.
COTT’s article, which appeared on www.news.caribseek.com, went on to state (COTT) “will aggressively defend the interests of its duly registered members and will take legal action against all promoters who in dereliction of their duty and established practice over the years to seek the granting of a licence from COTT, have instead aligned themselves with organisations who are seeking to undermine the integrity of COTT and by extension the owners of copyright who are duly registered members of COTT.”
Cornwall said while COTT is also a recognised body, that organisation does not enjoy a monopoly with respect to the issuing of copyright licences and does not administer the collection of royalties for works of mas.
He noted that promoters who have obtained a copyright licence from TTCO are entitled in law to carry out their business without interference from any copyright organisation, including COTT.
“Any promoter granted a licence by TTCO may contact our office in case of need. The Ministry of Legal Affairs, through its IP division, has convened various meetings over the last couple of years to effect co-operation between the copyright societies operating in T&T to avoid situations which have been ongoing between the copyright societies,” he said.
Officials from the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) are expected to come to Trinidad to mediate between the collection societies.
Referenced from: Daily Express
Access date: 20th April 2016