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  • 2018ZhiqinWuPhD

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A legal framework for global joint copyright management in musical works: based on Rawls's theory of justice

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis

Publication date2018
Number of pages256
Awarding Institution
  • Lancaster University
<mark>Original language</mark>English


The present music market has shown an imbalance of interests in terms of economic, social and cultural interests. The present research has found that joint music copyrights management is responsible for this issue. Joint management organisations (JMOs) are competing with each other in an unfair market worldwide due to the lack of harmonised rules to standardize their behaviours. It is imperative to establish a promising international copyright legal framework for regulating their behaviours, providing a fairer and common arena for both CMOs and IMEs, enabling JMOs to fulfil multiple functions so as to strike a real balance of interests between copyright stakeholders in music industry. It would also facilitate the cross-border flow of musical works in the digital era where copyrighted musical works flow across borders easily.

The proposed theoretical framework is formulated on the basis of Rawls's justice theory which provides powerful and systematic explanation and standards to evaluate and design JMOs' functions. The standard of multi-objective, named economic, social and cultural objectives, is proposed for balancing interests at stake, more precisely, justifying the interests of the least well-off. Therefore, this thesis examines and investigates the issues of unbalanced interests existing in cross-border copyright licensing in musical works and, accordingly, proposes to design a fairer copyright legal framework aiming to fulfil the multi-objective of copyright - economic fairness, social justice and culture diversity.