The Society for Economic Research on Copyright Issues

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues (RERCI)

RERCI Articles

Copyright Enforcement and Quality Differentiation on the Internet

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, 10(2), 27-54, 2013

Marine Lefort

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Abstract

Right-holders can create differences between their cultural goods to attract consumers with varying levels of willingness to pay. Some Internet intermediaries propose similar choices but do so without authorization. In this paper, we present a theoretical model of copyright piracy in which a rightholder competes in price with an Internet intermediary in a leader-follower game. The Internet intermediary provides two types of streaming goods (with and without restrictions). Copyright and intellectual property rights on the Internet are subject to ex-post adjudication. This means that enforcement can lead to uncertainty regarding Internet intermediaries' liability. We analyze how copyright enforcement and quality differences impact price competition. Our analysis suggests that law uncertainty plays a role in an intermediary's decision to enter the market, and thus that quality has an impact on law enforcement efficiency.

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Copyright & Endogenous Market Structure: A Glimpse from the Journal Publishing Market

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, Vol. 7, No. 1, 7-29, 2010

Giovanni Battista Ramello

Downloads:  144


Abstract

This article explores the journal publishing industry in order to shed light on the overall economic consequences of copyright in markets. Since the rationale for copyright is among others to promise some market power to the holder of the successful copyrighted item, it also provides incentives to preserve and extend market power. A regular trait of copyright industries is high concentration and the creation of large catalogues of copyrights in the hands of incumbents. This outcome can be observed as the aggregation of rights and is one of the pivotal strategies for obtaining or extending market power, consistently with findings in other cases. Journal publishing is no different in this respect from other copyright industries, and in the last decade has experienced a similar trajectory, leading to a highly concentrated industry in which a handful of large firms increasingly control a substantial part of the market.
It also provides a clear example of the effect of copyright dynamics on market structure, suggesting that a different attitude should be taken in lawmaking and law enforcement.

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The Economics of Collective Management in the Music Copyright Industry in The Netherlands: Digital Transformation and Equitable Remuneration

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, 2023, vol. 20, pp. 38-75

Nerko Hadžiarapović, Johan Versendaal, Marlies Van Steenbergen and Pascal Ravesteijn

Downloads:  58


Abstract

Economics is a popular and useful means to generate falsifiable, non-trivial predictions on how complex systems, such as the copyright industries, evolve. For the last two decades, an overarching theme in the economics of copyright has been how the copyright system relates to digitalization. Considering the swift progression of digital innovations in the copyright industries and related markets - of late with crowdfunding, blockchain technology, non-fungible tokens, the application of learning algorithms for recommendation systems or even for the creation of works - this is unlikely to change. However, it is challenging even for experts to select useful aspects of economic theory. This paper seeks to promote a 'cultural economics' perspective as a toolkit for even more nuanced and useful research on copyright. Overall, it argues that economists engaging with copyright ought to acknowledge the broader function of the copyright system as a means to approximate functioning markets in the presence of multiple sources of market (and government) failure. The copyright system does not only lay the foundations for markets by establishing exclusive, tradable rights. It also generates standards and routines that facilitate mutually beneficial transactions under real-world conditions of incomplete information and uncertainty. Overall, this paper develops novel agenda items for economic research on copyright.

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Copyright's Functions in Complex, Digital Markets

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, 2023, vol. 20, pp. 11-37

Christian Handke

Downloads:  52


Abstract

Economics is a popular and useful means to generate falsifiable, non-trivial predictions on how complex systems, such as the copyright industries, evolve. For the last two decades, an overarching theme in the economics of copyright has been how the copyright system relates to digitalization. Considering the swift progression of digital innovations in the copyright industries and related markets - of late with crowdfunding, blockchain technology, non-fungible tokens, the application of learning algorithms for recommendation systems or even for the creation of works - this is unlikely to change. However, it is challenging even for experts to select useful aspects of economic theory. This paper seeks to promote a 'cultural economics' perspective as a toolkit for even more nuanced and useful research on copyright. Overall, it argues that economists engaging with copyright ought to acknowledge the broader function of the copyright system as a means to approximate functioning markets in the presence of multiple sources of market (and government) failure. The copyright system does not only lay the foundations for markets by establishing exclusive, tradable rights. It also generates standards and routines that facilitate mutually beneficial transactions under real-world conditions of incomplete information and uncertainty. Overall, this paper develops novel agenda items for economic research on copyright.

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Copyright Licensing Under Asymmetric Information

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, 11(2), 1-26, 2014

Inés Macho-Stadler and David Pérez-Castrillo

Downloads:  49


Abstract

In this paper we aim to contribute to the discussion on the role of royalties in copyright agreements by concentrating on the incentives that they provide to the creator and the intermediary when the success of the work depends on their involvement with the commercialization process. We also consider the effect of this moral hazard on the matching among creators and intermediaries and their gains.

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Is a Picture Worth a Thousand Words? The Division of Private Copy Remuneration between Authors of Text and Images

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, 13(1), 29-60, 2016

Juan Santaló

Downloads:  37


Abstract

I propose and implement a method to divide the collection of private copy remuneration between the authors of text and the authors of images. I propose that the division should be based on the economic value added by text and images in the original work. Using a unique dataset of books and magazines copied in Spain, I estimate the economic value of each item, text and image, according to different characteristics of the written creative work. My estimates indicate that the average economic value of the images is between 6.35% and 20.00% of the average economic value of the text. These numbers are close to estimates that simply use the proportion of space occupied by images to proxy their economic value.

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Exploring a Better Design of Copyright Law

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, 14(2), 55-80, 2017

Shinya Kinukawa

Downloads:  28


Abstract

This study proposes a simulation model aimed at exploring how copyright law should be designed; that is, a desirable combination of copyright length and breadth. The model incorporates the specific properties of creative industries but is hard to deal with analytically because of its dynamic characteristics. Changes in social welfare under different copyright designs are thus examined by using numerical simulation. The simulation results reveal that a short and narrow copyright is the best, whereas a long and broad copyright is the worst. Moreover, in the long run, a long copyright can reduce social welfare even if the breadth is narrow.

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Some Remarks on Bargaining Power, Innovation, and 21st Century Copyright Law

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, 2023, vol. 20, pp. 1-10

Abhinay Muthoo

Downloads:  15


Abstract

This short article, which is my Keynote talk from the 2023 SERCI annual congress, explores and discusses some of the main issues and questions that arise when one thinks about the role of copyright. We discuss why it is needed and the relevance of transaction cost. We then explore the question of what the optimal nature of copyright is and how to go about addressing that. We discuss the crucial role of bargaining for copyright policy and optimal copyright.

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Aria Rentals: The ’Grand’ Performance Right at Work in the Royal Swedish Opera During the Twentieth Century

Review of Economic Research on Copyright Issues, 2021, 18, 26-55

Staffan Albinsson

Downloads:  0


Abstract

This study describes how composers were compensated during the twentieth century for their work in the Royal Swedish Opera through a performance right for drama, known as the ’grand right’. The study is based on primary data until the end of the 1980s. During this period a percentage-based tariff was used. The main finding is the doubling of the percentage rate claimed by publishers during the three decades following the end of the Second World War. The trade agreement concerning the commissioning of new music, the monopolistic position of publishers, the lack of reuse of new operas, and audience tastes are also discussed.

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