Fighting piracy in Ghana not easy – Copyright Administrator

The Administrator of Copy Right of Ghana, Madam Attafuah has bemoaned the ill fated attempts to curb the canker of piracy of artiste’s works in Ghana.

Madam Attafuah told GNA that over the years, her outfit has joined hands with the customs and the police to fight the menace but they have not still won the war as expected.

She dispelled the motion that her outfit has not done enough to check perpetrators of this diabolical practice. “We formed a task-force to deal with these pirates but due to lack of logistics, personnel and funds we have not succeeded. Smugglers also use our porous borders to bring in these contraband goods against the country’s laws.” She lamented.

Madam Attafuah, who showed this reporter some of the seized cassettes and CDs in their warehouse being guarded by a police officer, said they have done their best with the limited resources at their disposal and promised to fight on.

Asked what constituted piracy of people’s creative rights, she explained, using musicians as an example that “if someone buys a cassette or CD for personal use, that is allowed. However, if one uses the cassette or CD in his salon, shop, car, store, bar or hotel to enhance his work, he must pay a royalty else he commits an offence.”

“As regards the radio stations, music shops, spinners, they are supposed to log in to record the number of times and minutes the music was played and pay accordingly to the copy right administrator.”

She said “if one buys a cassette or CD and downloads this product for personal use, he commits no crime, but if you download to a second person, then one commits an offence punishable by law; especially those boys who download on phones and laptops for commercial purposes in the country.”

On the issue of finding solutions to this seemingly difficult national problem to better the lot of these artistes, she proposed that the artistes themselves should employ people to monitor the users of their products, collect their royalties on time, unite as one body, assist the police, customs and the administrator to track down these fraudsters to earn their requisite royalties.

She empathized with the artistes, actors, writers and all players in the creative industry for not getting their due for their works as a result of piracy.

Source: GNA

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