Economic rights

Economic rights are the exclusive rights of the author to gain economic benefit from his original or adapted work in any manner whatsoever (articles 12 of the Italian Copyright Law; article 2577 of the Italian Civil Code) and to receive remuneration for each use of the work.

Economic rights are independent from each other (article 19 of the Italian Copyright Law); the exercise of one of these rights shall be not detrimental to the exclusive exercise of any other rights. Therefore, such rights may be exercised both individually and jointly, and they may refer to the work, as a whole or in part.

Unlike moral rights, economic rights may be waived or assigned to third parties (article 107 of the Italian Copyright Law ; article 2581 of the Italian Civil Code) and are time-limited, that is they shall be valid for the entire life of the authors until the end of the seventieth year after their death (art. 25 of the Italian Copyright Law).

The right of publication is the exclusive right of the author to offer  his work to the public for the first time (article 12, paragraph 1 of the Italian Copyright Law). The first exercise of the author's right is deemed to be the first publication (article 12, paragraph 3).

The Reproduction right is the exclusive right to reproduce the work. It refers to the direct or indirect, temporary or permanent reproduction, by any means and in any form, wholly or in part (art. 12 of  the Italian Copyright Law.

In the literary sector, the reproduction of individual works or parts of works for readers’ personal use is allowed , provided that it is made by reproduction means that are not suitable to the public dissemination of the work (art. 68, paragraph 1 of the Italian Copyright Law).

Furthermore, the photocopy of protected works is permitted, provided that it is made by photocopying, xerox or similar means - for personal use and for a maximum of 15 % of each book or booklet, with the exclusion of advertising pages (68 3 of the Italian Copyright Law), with the obligation to pay remuneration to authors by the reproduction centres.

Nevertheless, each use conflicting with the economic rights payable to the author shall be excluded.

In the phono video  sector, the private reproduction of phonograms and videograms on any device and/or carrier  that is suitable for making private copies is allowed, under the payment of an equitable remuneration, if made by any natural person for personal use only, provided that it is made on a noprofit-making basis and has no direct or indirect commercial purposes (art. 71, sexies of the Italian Copyright Law).

The Italian Copyright Law protects all intellectual works that are creative in theirselves even if they are in oral form, granting the author (art. 2 paragraph 1 of the Italian Copyright law) the exclusive right to transform such works in written form or reproduce such works (art. 14 of the Italian Copyright Law) by printing, lithography, engraving, photography, phonography, cinematography and any other reproduction means.

The author shall have the exclusive right to disseminate his work to the public. This right consists of granting the authorization and receiving remuneration for the performance, representation   or recitation - made both against payment and free of charge - of musical, dramatic, cinematographic works or any other work that may be the subject of a public show (art. 15 of the Italian Copyright Law).

All such rights are related to the direct reception on the part of the public, for example with a live performance by the author, such as in concerts or theatres, or with mechanical instruments  such as through   audio and  video carriers, mp3 readers etc.

An essential requirement for exercising such right is that the performance or recital must be carried out in a place open to the public.

The above forms of expression are not considered public by the law - and therefore are not subject to any authorization on the part of the author - when they are carried out within the ordinary circle of family, boarding schools, schools or hospitals, provided that they are carried out on a noprofit-making basis (art. 15 paragraph 2 of the Italian Copyright Law).

The Law 7 October 2013 No. 112 established that the recital of literary works, performed on a non-profit-making basis inside museums, archives and public libraries for the sole purpose of cultural promotion and enhancement of the works shall not be deemed to be public. Such museums, archives and public libraries are selected on the basis of memoranda of understanding signed between the SIAE and the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism.

The Italian Copyright Law also provides for the cases in which the author is entitled to receive a reduced remuneration (art. 15-bis of the Itallian Copyright Law) that is when the above forms of expression occur in the health care centers or institutions that have officially been established in the offices of voluntary organisations,provided that such forms of expressions are carried out for members and guests and on a no-profit-making basis.

The author shall have the exclusive right to communicate and make available to the public his works by any communication means (art. 16 of  the Italian Copyright Law) including the radio, television, satellite broadcasting, retransmission by cable.

In addition to this type of communication, organized by time and places, such as in the case of TV or radio broadcasts, the legislation also provides for “the making available of the work, in such a way that members of the public may access them from a place and at a time individually chosen by them”. Such definition refers to the dissemination of protected works on the Internet and such dissemination may only be lawfully made with the permission of the author.

The right of communication to the public shall not be exhausted by any of the above acts of communication or making available to the public (art. 16, paragraph 2). Each act of communication of the work, therefore, requires the relevant authorizations from the authors and all those who have participated in the making process- of the work.

Any modification or transformation of a work, which means making any changes to the work that result in a modification of its structure or form but does not alter the original sense, shall be authorized by the author of the work.

The above is provided for by the right to create derivative works (art. 18 of the Italian Copyright Law). Such right refers in particular to translations, any transformation of the work in a different literary or artistic from, any modifications or additions that constitute a material transformation of the original work, adaptations, reduction and condensation.

The work resulting from such transformation or modification of the original work is defined as a ‘derivative work’ and is protected by the author’s right if the resulting work is creative in itself (art. 4 of the Italian Copyright Law), without prejudice to the rights attributed to the original work.

One example of derivative works is the adaptation of novels or works into scripts or screenplays.

The author shall have the exclusive right to publish his works in a collection.

Rental right (art. 18-bis of the Italian Copyright Law) means the author’s exclusive right to make available his works for use, for a limited period of time and for direct or indirect economic or commercial advantage.

Where an author has assigned his rental right to a phonogram, cinematographic or audiovisual works producer, that author shall retain

the right to obtain an equitable remuneration for the rental.

Lending right (art. 18, paragraph 2 of the Italian Copyright Law) means making available for use, when it is made through establishments which are accessible to the public, of the originals, copies or file carriers of author’s right works, for a limited period of time and not for direct or indirect economic or commercial advantage.

The rights referred to above shall not be exhausted by any sale or other act of distribution of originals, copies or carriers of author’s right works.

Resale right means the right enjoyed by the author of an original work of art or original manuscript to receive a percentage of the sales price obtained from any resale of the work subsequent to the first transfer by the author.

Subsequent sale means any sale effected by vendors, purchaser or intermediaries acting as professional sellers in works of art, such as salesrooms, art galleries and, in general, any dealer in works of art (art. 144 of the Italian Copyright Law).