The Protection of Intellectual Property Rights on Virtual World

Youtube is becoming an increasingly popular way to share creative content. When uploaded a video to Youtube can be a great way to gain an instant, large-scale audience and earn recognition. This method of self-promotion is also becoming a lucrative income stream for many.

In the Turkish legal system, the content producer, with Intellectual and Artistic Works Act can view the copyright and other related rights. But there is no legislation that fully protects the people who earn money as a content producer and the videos produced by them. Since there is no legislation that fully protects the content creator, it is necessary to look at the service conditions of Youtube. Youtube specifies the terms of service that ‘The terms are binding agreement and the right to make changes in the conditions reserved by Youtube legal entity’.

A number of rights are also listed in Article 8 of hereby terms. In the provision 8.1 of Terms of Service when uploaded a content, Youtube has a simple, royalty-free, transferable license right (together with a sub-license right). As a result, both the content producer and Youtube granted licence right by content producer can take advantage from the uploaded video. Although both the content producer and the Youtube can benefit from video, Youtube specifies the conditions and results of the benefitting video. It is stated that it is entitled to a royalty-free license from the video with a general terms and conditions and that Youtube cannot be used if the terms of the service are not accepted. As maintaining a contract that the content manufacturer cannot change, Youtube can have the right to comment on the content.

In Article 10 of the Law no. 5846 which is the legislation protecting the content producer; ‘’If the work brought together by the participation of more than one person constitutes an integral whole, the owner of the work, the union of those who bring it to the body.’’ Again in the third paragraph of Article 10 constitutes that the provisions of ‘technical services or technical assistance which is occurred when created the intellectual and artistic works is not essential’. Youtube and the content producer do not the work which is existed as a result of participation and since Youtube provides a platform, it does not have a right on the work. For this reason, if wished to upload videos to Youtube, you are entitled to a royalty-free transferable license with the condition that the content manufacturer has to accept. With a service condition that the content manufacturer must accept a royalty-free transferable license is obtained.

As a result, some issues such as ‘obtaining a license from a legal entity as a result of an imposed general terms and conditions’ and, ‘benefit from work on which the content producer works, without making any contribution to the work’ become the main topic of conversation. Unfortunately, thanks to proper functioning of the legal system and more study on intellectual property law these questions can be answered.