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How Effective are International Copyright Conventions in the Music Industry?

  • Andrew E Burke

The paper is concerned with the issue of whether international copyright legislation is effective in curbing audio software counterfeiting. The paper finds that copyright conventions have not been effective in reducing audio counterfeiting to comparatively low levels. This result holds even when allowances are made for the duration of copyright convention membership and the specificity of the articles of the convention. Economic development is found to be the main determinant of low counterfeit levels. This would tend to support anecdotal evidence which indicates that economic development is a necessary condition for the active recognition of audio property rights by the general public, judiciary and police. It is also consistent with a view that pirate audio software, being an inferior good, has a more buoyant market in less developed economies. From a policy perspective the research would seem to suggest that the extensive efforts and copious attention to detail by legal experts has made little impact on counterfeit activity and is secondary in importance to the socio-economic environment in which these laws are being applied.

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Paper provided by Centre for Research into Industry, Enterprise, Finance and the Firm in its series CRIEFF Discussion Papers with number 9516.

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Date of creation: Oct 1995
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:san:crieff:9516
Contact details of provider: Postal: School of Economics and Finance, University of St. Andrews, Fife KY16 9AL
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  1. Andrew E. Burke, 1995. "The Dynamics of Product Differentiation in the British Record Industry," Economics Technical Papers 951, Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics.
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