CB(1) 814/98-99(02)

Hotel Industry's Position Regarding Copyright Ordinance.

1.a.The Ordinance itself in many areas is unfair to the hotel industry. There is no "guideline" for copyright fee-collecting societies on how fees are charged.

b.Hotels are vulnerable to overcharging and double charging by any fee-collecting society which sets its own fee standards on an item by item basis.

c.Fee-collecting societies are not transparent. Trades and industries do not know how they come up with the tariff calculations nor how the royalties are distributed.

d.The industry recommends that a token amount for each hotel is to be paid to those fee-collecting societies which would share the fees by themselves.

2.a.There is no clear "definition" on "public" and "private" performance. As the law presently stands, a public performance can be defined as music played in a hotel guest room, which, according to international hotel industry's norms and practices, is regarded as a "private" area.

b.Copyright Ordinance should be restricted to performance of a public nature only where admission fee is charged.

3.Royalty should be charged only from the "source" i.e. at the time of buying and selling.

4.The industry recommends restore Clause 78 of the Draft Copyright Bill which provides residents and inmates of the hotel to be excluded from the definition of "having paid for admission".

5.a.There is no way of knowing how legitimate the claims is to collecting fees and royalties by the fee-collecting societies as authors/composers cannot be traced or have died many hundred years ago.

b.Fee-collecting societies claim represent authors/composers. The hotel industry is not in possession of any authentic documents to confirm who these copyright holders actually are. Whether there is any official registration mechanism for authors/composers certifying they are authentic copyright owners.

6.Composition of the Copyright Tribunal is mainly composed of lawyers and members directly or indirectly related to copyright fee-collecting societies. There are no representatives from other trades and industries including the hotel industry which are affected by the Ordinance.

7.The hotel industry recommends, as a first step, to review the Copyright Ordinance and then introduce appropriate amendments.