It’s about CLASS
CLASS was established in September 1999 after nearly four years of efforts by interests groups, representing both local and international publishers and authors based in Singapore to protect their published works. After suffering years in silence as their works were copied illegally, these groups of rights creators had finally decided to seek a mechanism of control to protect their works. As the law also provided for “just recompense” to authors and publishers for their copied works, the formation of CLASS also offered a refreshing avenue for rights owners to be compensated. CLASS thus serves as a conduit for users of copyright materials who could do so legally while at the same time, satisfies the reasonable demands of a modern information-driven society.
As a copyright collecting society, CLASS collects and distributes to its members and foreign reproduction rights organisations (RROs) with which CLASS has reciprocal or bilateral agreements, their shares of royalties received. It also provides adequate data to enable these sister RROs to pay individual authors and publishers. In addition, CLASS can and will also institute such legal proceedings as may be necessary for the enforcement of the rights entrusted to the Society.
CLASS sees its principal licensing areas in Singapore as being education, government and industry. Each of these broad categories has three to four sub-groups, namely:
– Education: general education; higher and further education; charities and religious bodies
– Government: government; statutory boards and public bodies
– Industry: trade; industry; commerce; professions
Basically, CLASS is akin to a banking operation with legal overtones: it collects fees from licensed users for acts of photocopying from books and periodicals and e-copying. After deducting its operating costs and any reserves or provision that the CLASS Board may decide, the Society will then distribute the balance to our members for them to pay to individual authors and publishers; and to foreign RROs for them to distribute accordingly to local custom and practice.
CLASS aims to offer each sector of the user community the most appropriate form of licensing for its need and to that end, it is always prepared to be flexible when discussing proposals for licensing. But certain core principles will always apply.
– CLASS’s responsibility to copyright owners is paramount and it must exercise care not to undermine the value of the rights entrusted to it.
– All licensees have access to the full repertoire of works handled by CLASS.
Board of Directors
CLASS’ Board of directors come from different categories:
– Authors (Local & International)
– Publishers (Local & International)
This mix of directorship ensures that, as far as possible, a balance of interests is maintained in the decision-making at CLASS. The interests of author and publisher members are represented.