Copyright protection for factual compilations in Singapore: creativity alone is not enough

By Pin-Ping Oh


The Singapore Court of Appeal has recently confirmed, in the case of Global Yellow Pages Limited v Promedia Directories Pte Ltd [1], that for a factual compilation such as a directory or a list to be protected by copyright there must be creativity in the selection and arrangement of the data. However, an oft-neglected consideration is that creativity alone is not enough, and it is equally important to show that the compilation was created by a human author working alone or in collaboration with others in order to establish authorship of the compilation. As the cases have demonstrated, this may be a difficult task in the case of computer-generated works or when there is reliance on user generated content.

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