The Legal Nature of Video Games – Adapting Copyright Law to Multimedia

  • Julian Simon Stein University of Glasgow Johannes-Gutenberg Universitaet Mainz


In Copyright Law, video games are still a contentious matter. The multimedia nature of games brings up the question on how to define their legal nature. While there are several original underlying works in video games such as computer programs, artistic works, musical works, dramatic works etc., video games enjoy protection as films or audiovisual works respectively in many jurisdictions, making video games an arrangement of a multiplicity of works. However, some have argued to define video games as a single 'multimedia work' rather than a product of many works of copyright.

This article analyses the different types of original and derivative works contained in video games before evaluating the necessity and feasibility of a multimedia category of work, arguing in favour of the current system.


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June 5, 2015