4.2.1 Right of reproduction

Authors have the right to produce copies of their work such as printed matter, phonograms, audio visual fixations or data carriers (Art. 10 para. 2 (a) CopA), i.e. to reproduce their work.

⇒ Other examples:

Printing, producing copies of works or parts of works on plastic or other materials, scanning, faxing, screening (with a retro projector or a projector connected to a computer, etc.), opening a file on the screen, e.g. a PDF or an image file, reproducing an MP3 file, uploading, downloading (Internet and intranet), browsing, caching, linking, embedding, etc.

Generally speaking, only authors or owners of rights (if the right of reproduction has been assigned) may copy a work. But not every act of reproduction by other parties is prohibited – the copyright law provides limiting provisions (or statutory licences) that allow the exceptional use of protected published works (e.g. private use, private use for educational purposes, and professional use, Art. 19 para. 1 CopA or temporary copies Art. 24a CopA).


4.2.1-1 Is downloading a text from the Internet always considered to be reproduction?

Yes, this is reproduction pursuant to Art. 10 para. 2 (a) CopA. Files are called up on the Internet and saved on the computer. A copy of the file (=reproduction) has therefore been made on the computer. Although such files are usually only copied temporarily, e.g. the data is copied to the computer’s memory during the download and deleted again when the user leaves the website, they can also be saved permanently so that they can be called up again later. In this regard, Art. 24a CopA governs the admissibility of temporary copies.