New Zealand Copyright Act, Wellington, Wellington (1896)

Source: New Zealand Legal Information Institute

New Zealand Copyright Act, Wellington, Wellington (1896), Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900), eds L. Bently & M. Kretschmer,

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Record-ID: uk_1896

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New Zealand Photographic Copyright Act 1896 (1896 No.16)

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As explained in the abstract to uk_1869c, the Fine Arts Copyright Act 1862 protected authors resident in any of the dominions of the Crown, but it only applied throughout the territory of the UK. Protection in the colonies was a matter of local colonial law. While the Fine Arts Copyright Act 1862 became a model for legislation in a number colonies, there were also examples of regional variation. One example was protection for the sitters of photographs. In the UK, while legislative proposals were put forward including special protection for sitters (see, for example, cl.18(2) uk_1900) they were never enacted. By contrast, the New Zealand Photographic Copyright Act 1896, amongst other things, provided for the recovery of penalties against ‘any person who shall in any way reproduce or publish the portrait of an individual or individuals… without the authority in writing of the individual or individuals whose portrait or portraits have been taken’ (s.4). Protection for sitters was also enacted by the Colony of the Cape of Good Hope (which, with Natal, the Transvaal and the Orange River Colony were to form the Union of South Africa in 1910): the Cape of Good Hope Artistic Copyright Act 1905 (No. 46 1905, s.8) included a statutory power (independent of copyright and exercisable against the copyright owner) on the part of a commissioner or ‘person whose likeness was taken’, to control the ‘sale, gift or exhibition’ of any photographic likeness.

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  • Cooper, E., Art and Modern Copyright: The Contested Image (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2018)

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Location: Wellington

Language: English

Source: New Zealand Legal Information Institute

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General Assembly of New Zealand

New Zealand Photographic Copyright Act 1896

Justices of the Peace
New Zealand
Summary Proceedings

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Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900) is co-published by Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge, 10 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DZ, UK and CREATe, School of Law, University of Glasgow, 10 The Square, Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK