Moral Rights on Protected Works

May 28, 2015

The Court of First Instance of Turin has ordered a preliminary injunction regarding the protection of moral rights of the author of a work protected under copyright. The case was brought before the court by Riccardo Pagani and the defendant was his former employer Leo Burnett Company Srl.

Riccardo Pagani claimed to be the author of the script of the TV commercial FIAT 500 Cult Yacht, while we was an employee of the defendant. Pagani sought the court to order the defendant to inform his authorship to Fiat s.p.a. and to organizations and institutions that have awarded prizes to the commercial.

In its ruling, the court addressed two matters.

  • Protected work and Riccardo Pagani’s creative contribution
    The court mentioned that the protected work whose authorship is being discussed is the TV commercial FIAT 500 Cult Yacht, which is unquestionably a protected work. It is stated that the creation of an advertising film is a complex work that combines audio and visual elements and its projection is a moment of paramount significance in the creative process. The court deemed that in the present case it must to be determined if the script created by Pagani, given its contents, has a connection with the final advertising film.
  • Riccardo Pagani’s script and its relation to the commercial
    The court held that the commercial’s guiding idea was present in Pagani’s script and that, as such, Pagani had provided a necessary and determining contribution to the creation of the commercial. The court stated that the script was not just an idea and, in fact, was an actual complete projection of the commercial which could be used by any current employee of the defendant. Indeed, two employees of the defendant acknowledged that they worked on an idea originating from Pagani.

The court ordered Leo Burnett Company Srl to issue a statement, directed to the relevant entities, rectifying the authorship credits of the advertising film FIAT 500 Cult Yacht and indicating Pagani as author along with the other two co-authors already indicated.

 


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