Business establishments that run radio broadcasts that contain copyrighted music are now liable to pay royalties, according to a new ruling by the Supreme Court.

The decision came following a case filed by the Filipino Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, Inc. (FILSCAP) that asked for the reversal and the repeal of a decree that previously denied the group the right to gather license fees or royalties over its members’ intellectual property, namely music.

In a hearing that involved a multitude of judges, the new ruling was established as spearheaded by SC justice Rodil V. Zalameda whose signature asks for a Baguio-based restaurant company, Anrey, Inc., to pay a small sum of Php10,000 to FILSCAP for alleged template damages, after what seems to be an unlicensed public performance of the plaintiff group’s copyrighted songs in its portfolio. Likewise, a sum of Php50,000 is also being charged for the attorney’s fees.

Drawing from the case, the court has also mandated the use of the decision as a reference for amending necessary guidelines around the Intellectual Property Code, particularly involving the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines as well as the House of Representatives and the Senate, without infringing the Berne Convention and the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) Agreement.



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