DATE: August 30, 1996
prepared by the Chairman of the Committees of Experts
on a Possible Protocol to the Berne Convention
and on a Possible Instrument for the Protection of the Rights of Performers and Producers of Phonograms
4.01 Article 4 confirms that computer programs are protected as literary works, as that term is used in Article 2 of the Berne Convention. The provision is of a declaratory nature, and it explicitly codifies the established interpretation. The protection applies to the expression of a computer program in any form, including source code and object code.
4.02 This provision combines the proposals of Canada, the European Community and its Member States, the People's Republic of China, the United States of America, and Uruguay. The proposed Article does not include a second paragraph concerning exceptions as had been proposed by the European Community and its Member States, the United States of America, and Uruguay, because provisions to the same effect are proposed in Article 1(2) and in Article 12 as general rules.
4.03 Article 4 embodies the essential contents of the provisions of Article 10.1 of the TRIPS Agreement.
Computer programs are protected as literary works within the meaning of Article 2 of the Berne Convention. Such protection applies to the expression of a computer program in any form.
[End of Article 4]