Copyright and neighbouring rights.

The Law on Copyright and Neighbouring Rights protects works of science, literature, and the arts (copyright), as well as stage productions and phonograms of radio broadcasting or cable TV organisations (neighbouring rights). Copyright comes into existence automatically when an original work is produced in some tangible form and copyright protection is generally granted without any registration requirements.

An author is usually the person who creates the work. The author is generally the original owner of copyright. Copyright in a work made by an employee in the course of his employment is originally owned by their employer.

The right to use a copyrighted work may be assigned. The assignment or licensing of copyright can be done by means of a written contract. The following assumptions and restrictions are established by law as regards to copyright:

  • If the period for which the rights are assigned or licensed is not specified, the author may terminate it on the expiration of a period of five years subject to six months notice.
  • If the contract does not specify the territory for which the rights are assigned or licensed, the rights concerned by the contract have effect only on the territory of the Russian Federation.
  • All the rights of exploitation of the work that are not expressly assigned or licensed are deemed not to have been assigned or licensed.
  • The contract may not relate to exploitation rights that are not known at the time of its conclusion.
  • The contract must specify remuneration in the form of a percentage of the revenue derived from exploitation of the work unless that is not possible in view of the nature of the work or the particular circumstances of the exploitation.
  • The contract may not relate to exploitation rights arising in connection with works that the author may create in the future.
  • Any clause in the contract that imposes restrictions on the author to create works on a particular subject is invalid.

Copyright is protected for the lifetime of the author(s), plus 70 years after his/her(their) death(s).

Computer programs enjoy protection as literary works, while databases are protected as anthologies. Although registration is not mandatory for protection, an author may voluntarily register with the appropriate agency. The computer program or database is protected for the lifetime of the author(s) plus 50 years after their death(s).

Legal protection is applicable to an original topology of an integrated microcircuit, developed as a result of the author's work. The author has the exclusive right to use the topology and is entitled to prohibit the unauthorised use. Rights in a topology may be transferred fully or partially to others under a contract in writing. Although the registration of a topology is not compulsory for its protection, an author may register it with the appropriate agency. The exclusive right to use the topology is effective for 10 years from the date of its initial use or from the date of the topology's registration, whichever is earlier.

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