By Cynthia Nzuki and Caroline Wanjiru
In one of our previous blog posts (here), we tackled the legal framework of collective management organizations (CMOs). At that time, the existing law that informed our discussion was the Copyright Act, No.12 of 2001(the Act). On 18th September, 2019 the President of Kenya signed into law the Copyright (Amendment) Bill, 2019(the Amendment Act) (see here); which introduced a number of changes to the Act. In this piece our focus will be on the changes that affect CMOs.
If one could recall, not so long ago CMOs, and in particular MCSK, were in the hot seat pertaining allegations of issuing out “peanuts” as royalty payment (news piece here). It is notable that the debate on CMOs more often than not, revolve around collection and distribution of revenue. Has the Amendment Act addressed this?
- CMO defined
The Amendment Act specifically defines a collective management organization (CMO). Section 2 therein defines a CMO to mean an organization approved and authorized by the Board (KECOBO) which has as its main objectives, or one of its main objects, the negotiating for the collection and distribution of royalties and the granting of licenses in respect of the use of copyright works or related rights. This is the same definition of as that of a ‘collecting society’ provided for under section 48 (4) of the Copyright Act.Continue reading