Section Code: 0001 - 0005

COPYRIGHT ACT B.E. 2537 (1994)

Given on the 9th day of DECEMBER B.E. 2537 (1994)
being the 49 year of the present reign.

Chapter 1 : General Provisions

By royal command of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej it is hereby proclaimed that:

Where as it is proper amend the law on copyright, it is hereby enacted by the King's Most Excellency Majesty with the advice and consent of the National Legislature as follows:

Section 1

This Act is called the "Copyright Act B.E. 2537 (1994)".

Section 2

This Act shall come into force ninety days after the date of its publication in the Government Gazette.

Section 3

The Copyright Act B.E. 2521 shall be repealed.

Section 4

In this Act:

  • Author means as a person who makes or creates any work which is a copyright work as defined by this Act;
  • Copyright is the exclusive right to execute any act by virtue of this Act regarding the work created by the author;
  • Literary work means any kind of literary work including books, pamphlets, writings, printed matters, lectures, sermons, addresses, speeches, and computer programs;
  • Computer program is defined as instructions, set of instructions or any other matter, which are used with a computer in order to operate the computer or to generate an output, regardless of the computer language;
  • Dramatic work is defined as a work pertaining to choreography, dancing, acting or performance in dramatic arrangement, including a pantomime;
  • Artistic work means a work of any one or more of the following characters:
    1. Work of painting and drawing, that is a creation of configuration consisting of either lines, lights, colors or other matter or the composition of such matter upon one or more materials;
    2. Work of sculpture is defined as a creation of configuration with physical volume;
    3. Work of lithography is defined as a creation of a picture through printing process using a printing block or plate to perform the printing;
    4. Work of architecture is defined as a design of building or construction, an interior or exterior design as well as a landscape design or a creation of a model of building or construction;
    5. Photographic work is defined as an image created with the use of an image-recording device that allows light to pass through a lens to a film or a piece of glass and developed with a liquid chemical of specific formula or with any process that creates images, or a recording of images with other devices or methods;
    6. Work of illustration, map, structure, sketch or three-dimensional design with respect to geography, topography or science;
    7. Work of applied art is defined as a work applying any one or a combination of the works mentioned in (1) to (6) for other uses other than the enjoyment of the merit of the work, such as for functional use, decoration of materials or appliances, or for commercial gain;
  • given that, whether or not the work in (1) to (7) has artistic value and it shall include photographs and plans of such works;
  • Musical work is defined as a work amounting to a song which is composed for the purpose of playing or singing either with melody and lyrics or melody alone, including arranged and transcribed musical notes or a musical diagram;
  • Audiovisual work is defined as a work composed of a series of images recorded on any type of materials and capable of being replayed with a device necessary for such material, including the sounds accompanying such work, if any;
  • Cinematographic work is defined as an audiovisual work composed of a series of images which can be displayed in succession as moving pictures or can be recorded upon other materials in order to be shown in succession as moving pictures, including the sounds accompanying such moving pictures, if any;
  • Sound recording is defined as a work composed of a series of music, sounds from a performance or any other sounds recorded on any kind of material able to be replayed with a device necessary for such material, but not including the sounds accompanying a cinematographic work or another audiovisual work;
  • Performer is defined as a performer, musician, vocalist, choreographer, dancer, or a person who acts, sings, speaks, narrates or performs in along with the script or performs in any other manner;
  • Broadcasting work means a work which is transmitted to the public by way of radio broadcasting, sound and/or video broadcasting on television or by any other comparable means;
  • Reproduction includes any method of copying, imitating, duplicating, block-making, sound recording, video recording or sound and video recording of the essential part of an original, copy or publication whether in whole or in part and, regarding computer programs, means duplicating or copying the program from any medium of the essential part with any method without a manner of creating a new work whether in whole or in part;
  • Adaptation means a reproduction by conversion, improvement, modification or emulation of the substantial part of an original work without creating a new work, whether of the whole or in part;
    1. regards to literary work, it must include a translation, a transformation or a compilation by means of selection and arrangement;
    2. regards to a computer program, it shall include a reproduction by means of transformation, improvement or modification of the program of the essential part without creating a new work;
    3. concerning a dramatic work, it must include the alteration of a non-dramatic work to a dramatic work or a dramatic work to a non-dramatic work, whether in the original language or another language;
    4. concerning an artistic work, it must include the alteration of a two-dimensional work or a three-dimensional work to a three-dimensional work or a two-dimensional work or the creation of a model based on the original work;
    5. concerning a musical work, it must include an arrangement of tunes or an alteration of lyrics, rhythm or melody;
  • Communication to public means making the work available to the public by means of performing, lecturing, preaching, playing music, causing a perception by sound or image, constructing, distributing or by any other means;
  • Publication is defined as the distribution of recreated copies of a work, whatever the form or character may be, with the authors consent where such copies are accessible to the public with a reasonable quantity having regard to the nature of the work; assuming that the performance or play of a dramatic work, a musical work or a cinematographic work, the lecture or the recitation of a literary work, the sound and video broadcasting of a work, the exhibition of an artistic work and the construction of a work of architecture shall not constitute publication;
  • Official is described as a person appointed by the Minister for the execution of this Act;
  • Director-General is defined as the Director-General of the Department of Intellectual Property and will include the persons entrusted by the Director-General of the Department of Intellectual Property;
  • Board is defined as the Copyright Board;
  • Minister means the Minister of Commerce who has charge and control of the execution of this Act.

Section 5

The Minister of Commerce shall have charge and control of the execution of this Act and shall have the power to appoint competent officials and issue Ministerial Regulations for the execution of this Act.

The Ministerial Regulations shall come into force upon their publication in the Government Gazette.