After several revisions throughout the years, the Code of Intellectual and Artistic Works No. 5846 (“Code”) which has been in force since 1951 is about to be amended once more in order to clear up practical issues and to keep up with technological developments. Accordingly, the Draft Law amending the Code of Intellectual and Artistic Works (“Draft Law”) was made available  to the public  for comments by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. Opinions and suggestions may be submitted online until 5 June 2017. 

The Draft Law  was prepared mainly with a view to rendering general principles compatible with European Union legislation, clarifying ambiguous expressions in the existing wording of the Code which lead to different interpretations, improving the practice of administrative applications and taking precautions against digital breaches of law. 

One of the amendments introduced by the Draft Law is the establishment of Common Licencing Associations in order to create a sole respondent for users regarding licencing activities. The Draft Law also foresees extensive and detailed provisions including, but not limited to, retransmission rights, principles for lending works, reproduction for archive purposes, reproduction by way of photocopying and infringement of rights on the internet.

Other main introductions of the Draft Law concern precautions against the infringement of rights on the internet due to the fact that it is constantly used to access intellectual and artistic works. Pursuant to the Draft Law, actions disabling technological precautions that protect digital online works are deemed a crime and new methods have been introduced in order to track unlawful file sharing. In this regard, internet users who share files without permission will be determined and those users’ internet speed will be slowed down as a sanction for a maximum period of six months. The details are expected to be set forth under the upcoming secondary legislation.

Certain administrative fines have also been regulated under the Draft Law and in this respect the amounts of fines will vary between TRY 2,000 and TRY 20,000 depending on the size of the enterprises committing the breach.