Berne Convention Implementation Act of 1988

Berne Convention Implementation Act Of 1988

Berne Convention Implementation Act of 1988

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The Berne Convention Implementation Act of 1988 is a copyright act that came into force in the United States on March 1, 1989, making it a party to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works.


The United States refused initially (that is, for 102 years from 1886 to 1988) to join the Berne Convention. There were some practical, justifiable reasons. It would have required major changes in its copyright law, particularly:
(A) moral rights,
(B) an area called copyright formalities, including registration, deposit and mandatory copyright notice.

At the same time, US copyright experts seem to agree that America's approach to international copyright relations prior to accepting the Berne treaty was badly flawed. Barbara Ringer, who served for years as the leading US copyright official, said, "Until . . . role in international copyright was marked by short-sightedness, political isolationism, and narrow economic self-interest."

H. Sandison writes: "The roots of American isolationism only if their authors were citizens or residents of the United States." Ringer observed that...
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