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It is clear that the 1st section of the 3 W. 4. c. 15. gives to their author or his assignee, a sole liberty of performing them, without affixing any limitation of time. By printing and publishing he exchanges this perpetual monopoly for a new one, viz. the sole right of performance for the author's life, or twentyeight years from the time of publication. Now the 5 & 6 Vict. c. 45. s. 20., which includes musical compositions, professes to extend the term given in the fornier act; and this it certainly cannot mean to effect by reducing that which is already perpetual, nor, on a close inspection of the section, and its concluding proviso, does it seem to do so. The enlargement of the term of copyright in the section merely relates to dramatic works when printed and published, leaving, it seems, the law as it was with regard to those productions whilst remaining in manuscript only, with this exception, that, in case of printing and publishing, the term of copyright will, for the future, date, not from the time of first publication, but of first performance.
Assuming this to be so, the law now stands thus:1. The author or assignee of a dramatic piece or musical composition, unprinted and unpublished,
has a sole and perpetual right to its performance. 2. The author or assignee of a dramatic piece or
musical composition printed and published within ten years before the passing of the 3 & 4 W. 4. c. 15. (10 June, 1833), or printed and published after the passing of that act, has the sole right of performance for the author's life and seven years after his death, and if that term expire before forty-two years from the time of first perform
ance, then for such forty-two years: in case of the author's death before publication, the right will endure for forty-two years from the time of first performance.
REGISTRATION OF COPYRIGHT IN THE DRAMA AND
By the 20th section of the 5 & 6 Vict. c. 45., there is to be the same registration at Stationers' Hall for dramatic and musical as for literary copyright, with this provision, that, in case of a dramatic piece or musical composition in manuscript, the person having sole liberty of representation need register only, 1. the title of the production; 2. the name and abode of its author or composer; 3. the name and abode of its proprietor; 4. the time and place of its first representation or performance. Pursuant, however, to the 24th section of the same statute, the omission to register will not prejudice the remedies which the proprietor of the sole liberty of representing any dramatic piece has by virtue of this act, or of the 3 W. 4. c. 15.
ASSIGNMENT OF COPYRIGHT IN THE DRAMA AND
The 22d section of the 5 & 6 Vict. c. 45. enacts, that no assignment of the copyright of a book consisting of or containing a dramatic piece or musical composition shall convey to the assignee the right of representation or performance, unless an entry of the assignment be made in the registry book, ex
pressing the intention of the parties that such right should pass by the assignment.
This section will prevent the recurrence of what took place in the case of Cumberland v. Planché, 1 Ad. & E. 580., where by the transfer of the copyright of a play, the right of representation was held to pass also.
REMEDIES AGAINST PIRACY.
The 21st section of the 5 & 6 Vict. c. 45. gives to the proprietors of the right of dramatic or musical representation or performance during the term of their interest, all the remedies provided by the 3 W. 4. c. 15.; and to that latter statute, therefore, we must look for the penalties against piracy. By the 3 W. 4. c. 15. s. 2., it is enacted, that if any person, during the continuance of the exclusive right of representing a dramatic piece, cause to be represented, without the author's or proprietor's previous written consent, such production at any place of dramatic entertainment within the British dominions, every such offender shall, for each representation, be liable to the payment of not less than 40s., or of the full amount of the advantage arising from the representation, or of the loss sustained by the plaintiff, whichever shall be the greater damage. These penalties are recoverable by the author or proprietor, together with double costs of suit in any court having jurisdiction in such cases, in that part of the British dominions where the offence is committed. Pursuant to the 24th section of the 5 & 6 Vict. C. 45., the right to recover these penalties is not prejudiced by an omission to register on the part of
the proprietor of the sole liberty of representing a dramatic piece.
It is a question of fact, and not of law, whether there has been a representation of part of a dramatic entertainment, under the 3 W. 4. c. 15.; and where the jury found that the singing the words of a song, taken from an opera written by the plaintiff, amounted to such a representation, the court refused to disturb the verdict: Planché v. Braham, 1 Jurist. 823.
INJUNCTION. – A right of property being vested by the act, dramatic writers and musical composers have also the remedy by injunction, on the same principles as the proprietors of literary copyright. See p. 29.
LIMITATION OF ACTIONS. - The 3d section of the 3 W. 4. c. 15. provides that all actions or proceedings for any offence or injury against that act shall be commenced within twelve calendar months from the committing of the offence, or else the same shall be void and of no effect.
COPYRIGHT IN ENGRAVING.
TITLE TO AND DURATION OF COPYRIGHT IN ENGRAVING. — By the 8 G. 2. c. 13. it is enacted, “That every person who shall invent and design, engrave, etch, or work in mezzotinto, chiaro oscuro, or, from his own works and inventions, shall cause to be designed and engraved, etched, or worked in mezzotinto or chiaro scuro, any historical or other print or prints, shall have the sole right and liberty of printing and reprinting the same for the term of fourteen years, to commence from the day of the first publishing thereof, which shall be truly engraved, with the name of the proprietor on each plate, and printed on every such print or prints.” The property in historical and other prints was by this act vested in engravers, who took from their own designs. By the 7 G. 3. c. 38. s. 1. the former statute was extended to the prints of any portrait, conversation, landscape, or architecture, map, chart, or plan, or any other prints whatsoever, whether they were taken from the artits's own original designs, or from any picture, drawing, model, or sculpture, either ancient or modern ; and the term of enjoying the right was in all cases enlarged from fourteen to twenty-eight years.
By these statutes, the property in prints is vested in the artist, but no mention is made of his assigns. It is, however, enacted by the 8 G. 2. c. 13. s. 2. that any person who shall thereafter purchase any plate for printing from the original proprietors thereof may print and reprint from the same without incurring the penalties. And, moreover, it is necessary, pursuant to the same statute, s. 1.. before a print can be copied with impunity, to obtain the consent of its proprietor, in writing, signed by him in the presence of two witnesses. And therefore it was decided that, on these statutes, the assignee of a print may maintain an action against any person who has pirated it: Thompson v. Symonds, 5 T.R. 41.; Godson on Patents, last ed. p. 404.
The 5 & 6 Vict. c. 45. s. 2. expressly including in the term book when mentioned in that act, every map, chart, or plan separately published, it would seem that to those productions extend all the benefits, rights,