Architects’ initiative to make building facades not billboards

The current Law on Copyright and Related Rights deprived the author of the realized part of the architecture of the right to prohibit, that is, not allow the lease of the facade. This initiative aims to change that.

Who is announcing Genex Towers this month? And at the Albania Palace? It has become somehow normal for the facades of buildings in our cities to become commercial bulletin boards.

In addition to this kind of advertising disrupts the appearance of buildings, some of which are for cultural monuments, the question is what is with copyright?

Such a law can lead to advertisements appearing on the walls of the Kalemegdan Fortress.

“By allowing inappropriate commercial billboards on the facades of legally protected cultural monuments, our society has shown disinterest, and the protection of monuments has been left to individuals, informal groups and associations, especially their authors, descendants and copyright holders.” – says Free Maldini on his own Facebook profile.

In order to preserve architectural and cultural assets from exploitation for the purpose of marketing campaigns, it is necessary, he says, to take the first step – change the current Copyright and Related Rights Act in Article 23, where the author of the realized work of architecture is inexplicably deprived of the right to prohibit, that is, not allow the leasing of the facade of his architectural work.

“Otherwise, abuse of the law can lead to extreme cases, such as commercial advertisements on the walls of Kalemegdan Fortress, monumental buildings of the Old and New Palaces, the Palace of Serbia or the dome of the House of the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia.” – says Slobodan Maldini.

Facades and billboards, January 11, 2022. Diary of delusions By Slobodan Maldini For many years we have witnessed the invasion of advertisements on…

Posted by Free Maldini on Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Improving the position of architects

As the new Law on Copyright and Related Rights is being prepared, Association of Serbian Architects (ASA) led by the architect Slobodan Maldini, she submitted an initiative to incorporate solutions into the law that would corrected the position of the author from the architectural scope.

Article 22, paragraph 1 of the current Law on Copyright and Related Rights stipulates that the author has the exclusive right to prohibit or allow others to lease the original or duplicate copies of his work. Lease, in the sense of this law, is the giving of originals or duplicate copies of a work to another for use for a limited time for the purpose of realizing direct or indirect material benefit.

Article 23, paragraph 1, item 1 of the same law prescribes that the author does not have the exclusive right referred to in Article 22, paragraph 1 of this Law if it is a matter of construction-realized part of architecture.

Although it is more than clear that the justified reason for the introduction of this exception is aimed at leasing premises within the building (apartments, business premises, etc.), here we have an obvious abuse of insufficiently clear legal wording according to which the described type of use of the automated part of the architecture is included in the lease of the constructed part of the architecture, even though it is the external, facade part of the building. ” – stated in the initiative.

It is further said that in this way, persons who earn money by using deeds they avoid asking the architect for permission to use the work in question and do not pay any royalties. The existing legal wording allows them to do that, the initiative says.


Posted by Association of Serbian Architects Asa on Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Amendment of Article 23

Therefore, the initiative proposes to remove the basis for the previously described abuse of the right to lease copies of works, so that the provision of Article 23 in the Law will read:

The author does not have the exclusive right from Article 22, paragraph 1 of this Law if it is about:

  1. construction-realized part of architecture, and only when it comes to its internal parts (residential units, business premises, etc.);
  2. a part of applied art, realized in the form of an industrial or craft product;
  3. a work created or multiplied for the purpose of leasing as an exclusive form of exploitation of the work, agreed between the author and the owner of the copy of the work.

In this way, the purpose of the existence of a legal norm is achieved, the exception is narrowed to a specific type of use and allows authors – architects and their successors to have fair control over the exploitation of their intellectual property, concludes in initiatives.

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