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Copyright conundrum on 3D data and 3D works

an introductory talk

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Copyright conundrum on 3D data and 3D works

  1. 1. Copyright Conundrum on 3D Data and 3D Works Tomoaki Watanabe, Ph.D. Project Associate Professor, Graduate School of Media and Governance, Keio University Imaging Conference Japan 2016, 2016.06.07-09, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Tokyo.
  2. 2. About: CommonSphere (Creative Commons Japan) GLOCOM (ICT policies, information society) Open Knowledge Japan (Open Data) Keio U. (Digital fabrication, open innovation) Not a lawyer Views my own, not those of the affiliated
  3. 3. Copyright Law Very broadly applicable Indiscriminate re: quality of works (historic masterpieces and mediocre failures both covered) The law gives “protection”: author‘s exclusive rights over a work .
  4. 4. Copyright Law (2) copyright law protects creative expression of thoughts and emotions Authors (or right-holders) have the exclusive right to use the works for a duration of time.
  5. 5. Copyright Law (3) “Creativity” of expressions: low bar Courts should not be in the position of determining what is creative and what is not. not expression: facts, ideas not creative enough: season’s greetings, opening of obituaries data (faithful reproduction of facts), others …
  6. 6. Scope and duration of protection Broad and long protection: Other people cannot make use of the works Narrow and short protection: Authors cannot make money from the works
  7. 7. Copyright Law: 3D Works, 3D Data 3D Works for pragmatic use: usually treated differently Why 3D works (for pragmatic use) treated differently? What are they anyway? Highly artistic Others Pragmatic 3D Objects Protected Mostly Not Others Protected Protected
  8. 8. Why & What Design law “protects” … registered aesthetic mass-production designs of visual patterns, shapes, colors, and combinations thereof Copyright law is interpreted to avoid duplicative coverage with the design law over the same object. Houses, Chairs/ Figurines/ Sculptures
  9. 9. 3D Data: Data issues and a 3D twist 3 Issues inherent in data: A. 2D works for pragmatic use ... Does not affect the protection (cf. maps, architectural plans) B. non-creative expression ... Does matter C. creative works captured non-creatively ... Does matter 3D data issue: seemingly creative 3D works captured non-creatively (cf. architectural plans)
  10. 10. 3D Data (2) Examples Mediocre sculpture plan on paper in straightforward manner (Creative work, non-creative capturing) … protected Mediocre chair plan on paper in straightforward manner (Non-creative work, non-creative capturing) … not protected
  11. 11. A twist: gap b/w intended use and shape Intent and shape do not correspond one-to-one Same shape, different copyright treatments? A chair for: sculpture earrings figurines furniture 3D animation movie/ video game
  12. 12. 3D Data: examples for intent-shape gap Mediocre chair for 3D animation movie/ video game (creative work (!), non-creative capturing) … protected Mediocre chair for 3D printing for earrings (creative work, non-creative capturing) … protected Mediocre chair for 3D printing for seating (non-creative work, non-creative capturing) … not protected? (see. Inoue, 2015)
  13. 13. Another twist: Scanning Scanning: faithful reproduction of real-world (facts) * general problems with tools; with automation/robots 1. A mythical creature for 3D printing as a figurine (data) … probably protected 2. The mythical creature, 3D-printed as a figurine (thing) … probably protected 3. The creature above, 3D scanned (data) … not protected
  14. 14. Foreign situation US… severability the key, but confusingly many tests FR… very broad coverage GE… has been narrow, but revisiting (similar to Japan) No uniformity, no convergence in sight
  15. 15. Implications Freely-available common resource (somewhat) abundant [market& communities] helps expansion [R&D] helps analysis [innovation] social sphere benefits professionals needs to be creative
  16. 16. Is copying harmful for innovation? - Music file-sharing - Unauthorized uploading of video - Manga in foreign markets - Fashion, American Football, Magic, etc. (negative space)
  17. 17. If you still want to protect your data/object - Copy-protection technologies - Other laws, contracts Laws Subjects Novelty Reg. Area Copyright Creative Exp. No No Cult Design Shapes, Patterns Yes Yes Indust Trademark Brands No yes Indust Unfair Compet. Outlook No No Indust
  18. 18. Still… - Copy protection may not be able to prevent “copying-by-3D scanning”
  19. 19. Alternative: Embrace openness - Immitation happens - You can expand your network/ platform - You can increase your recognition Losing control may be scary, but it can bring you a leverage (empowered “social” “crowd” empowering you)

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