Collective Administration of Graphical User Interfaces (GUI) in the Light of the BSA Decision

Pavel Koukal


In this paper the author addresses the issue of collective administration of graphical user interfaces according to the impact of the CJEU decision in BSA v. Ministry of Culture on the case-law in one of EU Member states (Czech Republic). The author analyses the decision of the Czech Supreme Court where this Court concluded that visitors of Internet cafés use graphical user interface actively, which represents relevant usage of a copyrighted works within the meaning of Art. 18 the Czech Copyright Act. In this paper, attention is first paid to the definition of graphical user interface, its brief history and possible regimes of intellectual property protection. Subsequently, the author focuses on copyright protection of graphical user interfaces in the Czech law and interprets the BSA decision from the perspective of collective administration of copyright. Although the graphical user interfaces are independent objects of the copyright protection, if they are used while running the computer program the legal regulation of computer programs has priority. Based on conclusions reached by the Supreme Administrative Court of the Czech Republic in the BSA case, the author claims that collective administration of graphical user interfaces is neither reasonable nor effective.


Graphical User Interface, BSA v. Ministry of Culture, Communication to the Public, Rental Right, Collective Administration, Computer Program


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