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New draft law abolishes Russian private copying levy and at the same time excludes withdrawal of rights by right holders from accredited collecting society

New draft law proposes some interesting changes in Russian copyright law. First of all, it proposes to abolish private copying levy. Article 1245 of Russian civil code, providing remuneration for free reproduction of phonograms and audiovisual works only for private purposes, is to be repealed. As a consequence draft law also proposes abolishment of accreditation for collecting society which is to be authorised to collect private copying levy. Item 4 of Article 1244, providing state accreditation or in other words exclusive authority for collecting society to collect private copying levy in Russia, is to be repealed. But all other accreditations for public performance right in musical works and sound recordings survive.

Draft law also proposes to make one interesting thing. Under item 4 of article 1244 of Russian civil code right holders having no agreement with accredited collecting society on management of their public performance rights, whether in musical works or in sound recordings, have the right to refuse from management of their rights by accredited collecting society at any moment and whether partially or completely. This item provides mechanism for withdrawal of rights from accredited collective management organisation. In other words right holders have the right to manage their public performance right by themselves, if they want. But the law proposes to exclude this provision. What it can mean? Without membership and without voluntary granted authority to CMO, right holders will have to entrust their interests and rights to collecting society accredited by state.

In explanatory note to draft law it is mentioned that under item 1 of article 1273 in a case of necessity and only for private purposes it is permitted to reproduce legally published work without author’s consent and without remuneration with some certain exceptions. Lawmaker believes article 1273 contradicts to article 1245.