The Ministry of Culture is the central body of the state administration for copyright and laws in this field. During access negotiations, in the area of intellectual property, the Ministry of Culture was responsible for the area of copyright and rights connected with copyright. International co-operation in the areas of culture, science, education and commerce, and membership in international organisations (especially World Intellectual Property Organisation, WIPO / OMPI) and the EU, forms the framework for the Slovak Republic’s legal basis in the field of copyright.
The Slovak enactment of laws on copyright and rights connected with copyright are based on classical European standards and fulfils any and all criteria of the European Union from the point of view of law compatibility.
The basic legal regulation of the Slovak Republic governing copyright is Act No. 618/2003 Coll. on Copyright and Rights connected with Copyright (Authors’ Act). This Act regulates relations originating in connection with the following:
- creation and use of literary or other works of art or scientific work;
- creation and use of artistic performance;
- production and use of sound recording and audiovisual recording (audiovisual fixation);
- broadcasting and use of radio broadcasting and television broadcasting;
- production and use of databases; and
- collective administration of rights.
The Act regulates the above relations so that the rights and legitimate interests of an author, performing artist, producer of a sound recording, producer of an audiovisual recording (audiovisual fixation), radio broadcaster and television broadcaster and the maker of a database are protected. The Act defines personal rights and the property rights of authors, performing artists and the holders of rights connected with copyright. It also regulates contract rights and the protection of rights.
The Act further regulates the operation of the collective administration of rights. The authorisation to carry out collective rights management is granted by the Ministry of Culture to individual organisations. Organisations of collective rights management pursuant to the Author’s Act, and on the basis of a licence granted by the Ministry of Culture, are as follows:
- Slovenský ochranný zväz autorský (SOZA) – rights to musical works;
- LITA, autorská spoločnosť – rights of authors of literary, dramatic, graphic and / or visual art, photographic, architectural, choreographic and audiovisual works of art and works of non-decorative art;
- SLOVGRAM, an independent association of performing artists – rights of performing artists and rights of producers of sound recordings and sound and picture recordings and broadcasters;
- OZIS, association of Slovak interpreters – rights of performing artists; and
- Slovenská asociácia producentov vaudiovízii (SAPA) – rights of producers of audiovisual recordings and other holders of rights of audiovisual recordings.
The Ministry of Culture is the national co-ordinator of Directive 2001/29/ES (the so-called Information Directive). With regard to its operation, which also includes media (internet and other digital media included), and copyrights and rights connected with copyrights, the Ministry also participates in the processes relating to the standardisation of Digital Rights Management.