Armenia 2011

Legal background

Scope and duration of copyright

Does copyright end immediately after the minimum period mandated by the Berne Convention? No
Economic rights of the author last 70 years after his death, for audiovisual and co-authorship works 70 years after the death of the last surviving author,anonymous or pseudonymous and collective works 70 years from the date the work is lawfully made available to the public, and works published in parts 70 years from the date the work is lawfully made available to the public and the term shall be calculated for each such item separately.
CR, Art. 37 (1-6)
Are works that are not fixed in some material form excluded from copyright? No
Such works are considered objectively perceivable if are made available to the public by public recitation, public performance or in other mode.
CR, Art. 3(2)
Has a court or tribunal ever limited the exercise of copyright under competition law, for example by imposing compulsory licensing or regulating royalties charged by dominant rights holders? No
We have no such a case. Compulsory licensing is not included in the scope of competition law.
PEC. Art 1
Has a court or tribunal ever limited the exercise of copyright pursuant to a bill of rights or similar human rights instrument, for example by preventing copyright from being used to stifle protected speech? No
Constitution of RA sets that Intellectual property is protected by the law.
CA, Art.31
Are databases of non-original material excluded from copyright? No
Protection extends only to the creative manner of selection and presentation of the database and not to its content, but makers of database are protected by related rights provided there has been substantial investment in obtaining, verifying or presenting the data contents.
CR, Art.3, (4) k) ii , Art.58 (1)(2)
Are rights holders prohibited from excluding user rights under copyright law? In part
In case of reproduction of architectural works,substantial parts of machine-readable data bases, whole books and graphic editions of musical works, persons lawfully possessing a copy of a computer program.
CR, Art. 23, 36 (1) a),b)
Is computer software excluded from the scope of patentable subject matter? Yes
They are protected by copyright as literary works under the Bern Convention
TRIPS Art.10(1),

Freedoms to access and use

By Home UsersIs there any general user right that is based on a set of balancing criteria, such as a "fair use" right? Yes
We have cases of free use of a work made public without the consent of the author and without remuneration for scientific,critical, informational, educational, library use to the extent justified by the purpose and for blinds.
CR , Art.22 (1)- (2)g)(i)
Is time, space and format shifting allowed (such as ripping music from CD to an MP3 player)? In part
Generally reproduction and transformation of works are subject matters of permission. Transformation of a work made public is allowed if it is a private or internal transformation and is not available to the public; short-time or rare temporary reproductions of a work are permitted, which have no individual economic significance, and is an inseparable and significant part of technological procedures Also for exclusively private use.
CR, Art. 13 (1) a) f), 22 (2) j), (3), Art. 23
Can consumers reproduce copyright material for their own use in the original format, for example for backup purposes? In part
Works lawfully made public exclusively for private, non-commercial use. But the provision does not apply to the reproduction of architectural works, machine-readable databases or their substantial parts, computer programs, whole books and graphic editions of musical works. Only a person lawfully possessing a copy of a computer program may reproduce it in a single copy for correction of errors or replacement.
CR, Art. 23, 36 (1)
Can works be communicated to a limited public (for example, family and friends) without infringing copyright? In part
Communication of works to a limited public is not public performance. Also is permitted public performance of musical works at educational institutions with the participation of teachers and students, if the audience is composed of teachers, students, parents.
CR Art. 20, 22(2) g)(ii)
For EducationMay students copy works for private research or study? Yes
Subject matter of free use, in one copy of independent articles, succinct works, lawfully published in collections, newspapers, other periodical publications, short extracts from lawfully published written works can be made by the libraries and archives on demand of natural persons.
CR, Art. 24 (3) b)
Does any such research and study provision cover distance and online education? No
We have no such provision in our law yet.
May translations of works be made for educational purposes? No
Translation of the work is the exclusive right of the author and his/her written permission is needed.
CR, Art.13 (1) e)
May educators copy works for use in the classroom? Yes
It is also subject matter of free use, without consent and remuneration to the author. Educational institutions can make copies for classroom studies. Computer programs are excluded.
CR, Art.24 (3)b)
OnlineAre temporary or transient copies, incidental to a lawful use, excepted from copyright? Yes
It is permitted to make short-time or rare temporary reproductions of a work, which have no individual economic significance, and is an inseparable part of technological procedures.
CR, Art. 22 (3)
Does the law exclude or limit the liability of intermediaries such as ISPs for copyright infringements carried out on their network? No
Simply our Copyright law has no such a provision yet. Law of RA on Electronic Communication does not foresee liability.
Is Internet access free of ISP filtering or monitoring for potential copyright-infringements? Yes
By content creatorsIs there any protection for consumers who non-commercially remix or mash up copyright works? No
May computer software be copied for the purpose of reverse-engineering interoperable software? Yes
By the person lawfully possessing a copy of a computer program.
CR, Art.36 (3)
Is the incidental inclusion of a work in other material permitted? In part
Without the consent of the author and without remuneration it shall be permitted to reproduce, broadcast for non-commercial purposes works of architecture, photography or figurative arts located in open for attendance places.
CR, Art. 25
Is there are copyright exception for parody or satire? In part
If the work is transformed into a parody or caricature, provided this does not create confusion as to the source of the work.
CR, Art. 22.2, j) (ii)
By the pressIs there a copyright exception for the news of the day? In part
Usually daily news or information on current facts and events are not covered by copyright.But the quotation of an extract of the work lawfully made public for an informational purposes is permitted only to the extent justified by the purpose.
CR, Art. 4 (1) b), Art, 22.2, a)
May copyright material be reproduced for the purposes of review and criticism? In part
only to the extent justified by the purpose of quotations.
CR, Art, 22.2, a)
May quotations be used for any purpose? No
Only to the extent justified by the purpose of the use not to create infringement of copyright.
CR, Art. 22 .2,
By LibrariesMay libraries copy works if they cannot reasonably be obtained commercially? In part
For restoring or substituting the lost or damaged copies (in one copy) and for replacement in case of the loss of the work at the other libraries.
CR, Art. 24 (3) a)
May librarians copy works for users for the purpose of research or study? In part
Of collections, periodicals, newspapers, short extracts from lawfully published written works.
CR, Art. 24 (3) b)
Are libraries allowed to make preservation or archive copies of materials in their collections? In part
For the study and research purposes, in one copy of the whole book if such work is out of print not less than 2 years and graphic edition of musical work by means of handwritten transcription. In general authors' permission is needed.
CR, Art.24,(3) c),d)
By disabled usersIs it permissible to copy or adapt work for the use of those with disabilities? In part
For those with disabilities there is not foreseen any. It is permitted the reproduction in Braille of a work lawfully made public for non-commercial use.
CR, Art. 22, 2 h)
In public affairsAre laws excluded from copyright? Yes
Copyright does not cover laws.
CR, Art.4(1)c)
Are other governmental works excluded from copyright? Yes
Official documents and state emblems are excluded.
CR, Art.4 (1)c)d)
Are the results of publicly funded research required to be published under an open access license? No
We have no such provision

Freedoms to share and transfer

Does the law permit a work to be released to the public domain before the copyright term expires, without any formality other than an overt act of relinquishment? No
Except the cases , when economic rights of the author may be transferred to a third person by a contract.
CR, Art.38 (4)
Can public domain works be used without the need for any payment or registration of the use? Yes
They can be used freely without the author’s remuneration and permission provided moral rights of the author are protected.
CR, Art.37 (7)
Does the law make special provision for the legal use of orphaned works? In part
Special provision is not foreseen, but collective administration bodies can use the amount in case the author or the right holder of related rights is not found within the lawful application prescription period for the benefit of other rightholders.
CR, Art. 64 i )
Is parallel importation of copyright works permitted? In part
Importation of copyright works is subject matter of permission,unless otherwise is stipulated by the contract.
CR, Art.13 (2), 40 (3)
Are there national programmes or policies to promote the use, production or dissemination of openly-licensed material such as free and open source software or open educational resources? In part
Armenia participated in EIFL-FOSS project. The elFL-FOSS ILS project coordinator is Tigran Zargaryan, director of Fundamental Scientific Library of the National Academy of Sciences, Armenia. Much of this program you can see at the website, EIFL-FOSS is improving ICT infrastructure in libraries as it enables libraries to maximize access to knowledge.
Are there national programmes or policies that specify or promote the use of open document formats? In part
There is no national program, but much work is done in elFL-OA, coordinator of which is Tigran Zargaryan. Workshop on "OA Awareness Raising" was organized in 2008 in Yerevan, Armenia.Information could be obtained at website At present 3 Armenian scholarly journals are freely available in DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals) Armenian Journal of Mathematics , Armenian Journal of Physics and Proceedings of NAS RA; Mechanics.

Administration and enforcement

What is the maximum penalty for copyright infringement for an individual? approximately $ 5480 penalty CrC, art.158, 2
What is the maximum penalty for copyright infringement for a corporation? approximately $ 5480 penalty CrC, art.158, 2
Is innocent infringement of copyright treated differently by the law? Yes
Compensation of damage (including the lost benefit) or compensation at the rate of double royalty or remuneration. Infringement on a large scale is penalized more heavily by Criminal Code.
CR Art 66, (2) d) e)
Is the creation or distribution of devices that can circumvent technological protection measures (TPM) permitted, where such devices can be used for legal purposes? No
Only for the access control or protection process, such as encryption, scrambling or other transformation of the work or a copy control mechanism.
CR, Art. 67 (3)
Is the use of such devices by consumers or intermediaries permitted in the legal exercise of user rights? No
Does national copyright or consumer protection law require that the use of TPMs on copyright works be disclosed to consumers? No
Are there cases in which the availability of injunctive relief for copyright infringement is limited by the law on public policy grounds? No
Have major ISPs resisted requests from copyright owners to pass on allegations that their users have engaged in copyright infringement? No
Are criminal sanctions limited to cases of large-scale commercial counterfeiting? No
Criminal sanctions are foreseen also for action is conducted in a significant volume shall be punished with penalty approximately $1370-$2740.
CrC , Art. 158. 1
Are damages for copyright infringement limited to the loss sustained, rather than a pre-established or statutory damages award? In part
Usually compensation of damage (including the lost benefit) is applicable. It depends on how the court will assess the caused damage.
CR, Art.66 (3) d)
Is there provision to penalise the wrongful allegation of copyright infringement? In part
In case of transporting goods by customs border is proved not infringing the right holder's rights. Then the applicant has to pay the possible costs and damages caused to the transporter.
CuC, Art .227 (1),3.e
Is there provision to penalise the obstruction of consumers' exercise of user rights? No


Armenia has signed all the important international  treaties in IP field. Problematic is the digital sphere. Internet does not know territorial boarders and is a fruitful ground for the rights infringements, especially of musical and audiovisual works. This gives birth to necessity of including new provisions in the Copyright law. Law on Copyright and Related Rights of RA 2006 is harmonized with the main provisions of   EU Directives in the copyright sphere and  WIPO Internet Treaties. In 2011 changes and amendments  are expected to be done connected with the inclusion of main provisions of  EU Enforcement Directive, large scale of  limitations and exceptions for libraries, museums, educational institutions, users, for those of disabilities, blinds, and use of works in digital form. In 2010 a new law was adopted "On Compulsory Labeling of Magnetic Carriers of Audio and Video Information by Control Marks (Holographic Labels)". The purpose of this law is to protect authors and consumers /users rights by protecting the discs against counterfeit thus minimizing unauthorized production. Amendments were made also in the Article 158 of the Criminal Code. High penalties are foreseen not only for the infringements of large scale, but also for the action conducted in a significant volume. The mentioned law and amendments in Criminal Code will come into force on 1 March, 2011 and will play a great role in regulation of the musical market. Supervision and enforcement in IPR area is implemented by the Police, particularly by the Division of Struggle against organized Crimes. It is today’s demand to foresee ex-officio rights (TRIPS) for police and customs bodies. I hope  the new draft will give solution to many questions, that have no answers today. Though Copyright law is harmonized with international standards, but even the perfect laws can not act themselves. Creators and users have to enforce it. Therefore very significant is the raise of public awareness in IPR field.

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