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Consultation on the Review of the Copyright and Related Rights Act 2000

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton T.D has set up the Copyright Review Committee to examine the current Copyright legislative framework to identify any areas of the legislation that might be deemed to create barriers to innovation and to make recommendations to resolve any problems identified. The Review will ultimately present a Report to Government with a set of recommendations for legislative change.

The Review will start with this consultation. Interested parties are invited to submit their views for inclusion in the review.


There is a perception in certain industries that national copyright legislation does not cater well for the digital environment and actually creates barriers to innovation and the development of new business models.

The Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton T.D. has decided to conduct a Review of the Copyright and Related Rights Act 2000 to identify any problems that might be perceived to create barriers to innovation. The Review will seek submissions from interested parties and make recommendations to resolve any problems identified. The Minister expects to receive the Final Report from the Review Committee by the end of 2011.

If it transpires that it is not possible to make any suggested changes within national Copyright legislation, within the constraints of the relevant EU Copyright Directives, the Review Committee will develop recommendations on the optimum copyright position for Ireland and recommend changes to EU Copyright legislation, as appropriate.

Review Committee

The Minister has invited Dr. Eoin O’Dell of Trinity College, Dublin to chair the Review Committee. Professor Stephen Hedley of University College Cork and Ms. Patricia McGovern of DFMG Solicitors will also serve on the Review Committee.

Terms of Reference

The Copyright Review will :

  1. Examine the present national Copyright legislation and identify any areas that are percieved to create barriers to innovation.
  2. Identify solutions for removing these barriers and make recommendations as to how these solutions might be implemented through changes to national legislation.
  3. Examine the US style ‘fair use’ doctrine to see if it would be appropriate in an Irish/EU context.
  4. If it transpires that national copyright legislation requires to be amended but cannot be amended, (bearing in mind that Irish copyright legislation is bound by the European Communities Directives on Copyright and Related Rights and other international obligations) make recommendations for changes to the EU Directives that will eliminate the barriers to innovation and optimise the balance between protecting creativity and promoting and facilitating innovation.

Conduct of the Review

It is intended to conduct the Review along the following lines:-

• Issue a call for submissions on 6th May 2011. Submissions to be received by end June 2011 [Extension of time for Copyright Review: Please note that due to a number of requests for an extension of time, the Copyright Review Committee has decided to extend the closing date for receipt of submissions to 5.00pm on Thursday 14th July 2011.]

• The Review Committee will examine the submissions and produce a Consultation Paper

• Publish the Consultation Paper and call for further consultations on the Consultation Paper to be received by 22nd September 2011

• The Review Committee will produce a Final Report and submit it to the Minister by end 2011.

Where to send submissions

Submissions to the Copyright Review Committee should be sent to or posted to:

Copyright Review,

Room 517, Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation,

Kildare Street, Dublin 2.

Submissions should be received by close of business on Thursday 30th June 2011 [Extension of time for Copyright Review: Please note that due to a number of requests for an extension of time, the Copyright Review Committee has decided to extend the closing date for receipt of submissions to 5.00pm on Thursday 14th July 2011.]


Any questions regarding the Review should be emailed to the or phone 01 6312587

Format of Submissions

Respondents are requested to make their submissions in writing and, where possible, by email. With regard to the latter, respondents are requested to ensure that electronic submissions are furnished in an unprotected format.

Confidentiality of Submissions

Contributors are requested to note that it is the Department’s policy to treat all submissions received as being in the public domain unless confidentiality is specifically requested. Respondents are, therefore, requested to clearly identify material they consider to be confidential and to place same in a separate annex to their response, labeled “confidential”. Where responses are submitted by email, and those emails include automatically generated notices stating that the content of same should be treated as confidential, contributors should clarify in the body of their emails as to whether their comments are to be treated as confidential.

Relevant provisions of Freedom of Information Act 1997 (as amended)

Respondents’ attention is drawn to the fact that information provided to the Department may be disclosed in response to a request under the Freedom of Information Act. Therefore, should you consider that any information you provide is commercially sensitive, please identify same, and specify the reason for its sensitivity. The Department will consult with any potentially affected respondent regarding information identified as sensitive before making a decision on any Freedom of Information request.

Publication of Submissions

Please note that it is intended to post all submissions on the Copyright Review website for the purposes of encouraging engagement, unless confidentiality is specifically requested.

Biographies of Review Committee Members

Dr. Eoin O'Dell BCL(NUI), BCL(Oxon), PhD (Cantab), FTCD, Barrister-at-Law. Dr O'Dell lectures Contract, Restitution and Freedom of Expression, researches and publishes primarily in the fields of private and commercial law, and has been President of the Irish Association of Law Teachers and Editor of the Dublin University Law Journal.

Patricia McGovern is Chairman and Head of the Intellectual Property Department and the Corporate and Commercial Department of DFMG Solicitors.Ms. McGovern has practised in almost all areas of corporate and commercial law and advises on all aspects of intellectual property law.  She is regarded as one of the leading intellectual property lawyers in Ireland and has considerable experience in advising on brand strategies, protection strategies for patents, trade marks, designs and copyright, and on all contentious aspects in intellectual property to include trade mark, copyright and design infringement actions.

Professor Stephen William Hedley BSc, MA(Oxon), LLB (Cantab), Barrister (Middle Temple), Head of Department of Law, UCC. Professor Hedley joined the Faculty in September 2003, after 18 years at Cambridge in England. He graduated from Oxford in 1980, completing a Masters' at Cambridge in 1981 and the Bar Finals in London in 1982. He has written textbooks on Tort (latest edition 2002) and Restitution (2001), as well as an account of the theory of Restitution (Restitution: Its division and ordering, 2001). He has also co-edited (with M Halliwell) a reference work on Restitution, compiled two books of statutory materials, and runs a website on restitutionary issues.

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Last modified: 31/05/2012

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