Chilean Senators: Don't Kill Open Licensing!

The Chilean House of Representatives recently passed a bill (Boletín 9889-24) that would make it functionally impossible for video creators to share their works under an open license, like a Creative Commons license. Now that bill is in the Senate.


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At first glance, the proposal seems well-intentioned. It would give video creators an unwaivable right of remuneration to authors of audiovisual works. That means that you'd still have the right to collect money for a video you created even if you transferred your copyright to an unsavory third party.

Unfortunately, the proposal would create more problems than it would solve. It would make licensing audiovisual media more expensive and complicated. It would also close the door to nontraditional licensing options.

Some creators want to be able to waive their rights; for example, using Creative Commons licenses. In fact, there are even video creators whose business models rely on open licenses. Creators' rights should include their right to opt out of their ability to control a work.

Please sign this petition and tell Chilean senators not to kill open licensing.

August 19, 2019

No on Boletín 9889-24

Dear Senators,

We urge you to reject the proposed law entitled “Audiovisual directors and screenwriters” (Boletín 9889-24). While the law may be well-intentioned, it would be harmful both for video creators and for online expression in general.

By creating an unwaivable right of remuneration, the law would actually limit video creators’ options for licensing their video works. Many artists intentionally choose to waive their right of remuneration; for example, by sharing their works freely under a Creative Commons license. There are even artists whose business models rely on their ability to broadly license their works to the public.

The law would also create unnecessary obstacles for licensees of video works. Effectively, licensees would need to pay twice for the exact same thing—once for the copyright license, and again for the author’s unwaivable entitlement, notwithstanding that both of these payments derive from the same act of authorship. It would do very little to help content owners; instead, it would put even more power into the hands of collecting societies.

While there may be a need for lawmakers to address unfair contracts for audiovisual works, this law is not the solution. Creating unwaivable rights limits creators’ freedom to do what they like with their works, and makes licensing more expensive and complicated for everyone.

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