ENTERTAINMENT LAW IN NIGERIA
Entertainment law is the body of laws that regulate Nigeria’s entertainment industry. Entertainment encompasses all the activities that happen within the music, television, creative arts, and movie industries.
MAJOR ENTERTAINMENT LAWS IN NIGERIA
These are the major laws that govern entertainment practices in Nigeria:
- THE COPYRIGHTS ACT (2004)
The Copyrights Act is the major legislation governing entertainment law in Nigeria. The Nigerian Copyrights Act was enacted in 2004. It exists to protect the work of authors, artists, songwriters, music publishers and composers, photographers, and other creatives.
The Copyrights Act is governed by the Nigerian Copyrights Commission (NCC). The Commission is responsible for regulating all matters affecting copyright in Nigeria as provided for under the Act.
Other functions of the Nigerian Copyrights Commission include Keeping an eye on Nigeria’s copyrights position Vis-a-vis other international copyright conventions; advising the Nigerian government on the right position to take about bilateral and multilateral copyright agreements; educating the Nigerian public on all matters related to copyright and maintaining an effective data bank on authors and their works.
- TRADEMARKS ACT (1990)
The Nigerian Trademarks Act was enacted in 1990 to protect designs, labels, signs, and logos from piracy, misrepresentation, and reproduction.
Under the Trademarks Act, there is established the office of a Registrar who keeps a record called the Register of Trademarks. The Register of Trademarks contains the names and addresses of all the trademark proprietors in Nigeria, the date on which applications were made for their registration, notifications of assignments and transmissions, the names and addresses of all registered users, and other matters relating to registered trademarks.
- THE COMPANIES AND ALLIED MATTERS ACT (2020)
The Companies and Allied Matters Act (2020) is the primary legislation for businesses in Nigeria. The law provides for businesses to be registered before they can become operational in Nigeria.
Through the Companies and Allied Matters Act (2020), an entertainment outfit may establish a company under Nigerian laws to protect its entertainment products. The entertainment outfit may be a music record label, a cinema studio, an entertainment center, etc.
It is advised that all entertainment outfits in Nigeria should be incorporated as entertainment companies under the provisions of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (2020).This will allow the entertainment outfit to enjoy legal protections like limited liability and tax incentives amongst many others.