Your Authoritative Source on Singapore Law

New Law for Compilations and Databases in Singapore?

Tan Tee Jim SC

(2012) 24 SAcLJ 745

A literary work is accorded protection under section 27 of the Copyright Act only if it is “original”. This simply means that the work must originate from the author, in the sense that he has expended “skill, judgment and labour” in coming up with the work. In determining whether there is such an expenditure, the courts traditionally would also take into account the preparatory efforts (such as obtaining, gathering and collecting facts) prior to expressing and presenting the facts in the work. There is now doubt as to whether the “skill, judgment and labour” involved in such efforts should be taken into account. This issue has impact on the protection of compilations and databases in Singapore.