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  1. Literary works
  2. Musical works
  3. Artistic works
  4. Films
  5. Sound recordings
  6. Broadcasts; and
  7. Derivative works

1.       Legal Rights

Author, copyright owner, and performer is given an exclusive right to control under the copyright law. Legal rights that are given to them include the rights to enforce their copyrighted works in cases of infringement either by civil or criminal action. In terms of criminal prosecution, it is conducted by the Enforcement Division of Ministry of Domestic Trade, Cooperative and Consumerism (MTDCC), or Royal Malaysian Police.

2.       Economic Rights

Economic rights that are given to rights holders include rights of reproduction, rights of communication to the public, rights to perform, showing or playing to the public, rights of distribution, and rights of commercial rental. These rights can be exercised during the period of protection governed under the Copyright Act 1987. Economic rights allow the owner of the rights to derive financial rewards from the use of his works by the user or commercial purposes. Form of economic rights can be by way of assignment, licensing, and testamentary disposition.

3.       Moral Rights

·         Paternity Rights

These rights allow the author to claim the originality rights of his or her creation.

·         Integrity Rights

This right authorizes the author to prevent any users from distortion, mutilation, or other modifications of his or her works whereby the result of the modification will significantly alter the original work and adversely affect the author’s honor or reputation.


  1. Literary, Musical or Artistic Works
    generally, these categories of copyright work reflect human beings which shall subsist during the life of the author plus 50 years after his death.
  2. The film, Sound Recordings and Performer
    These categories of copyright work shall subsist for 50 years from the work was published, fixed in a fixation for the film and sound recording. For the performer, the copyrighted work shall subsist from the performances was perform or fixation in a sound recording.
  3. Broadcasts
    For the copyright in broadcasts, its protection occurred in the way of transmission either by wire or wireless means, the period for fifty years shall be computed from the which the broadcasts were first made.

Whoever use any copyrighted works without consent or authorization from the author, copyright owner and performer, it may constitute an infringement under Copyright Act 1987. Amongst the act of infringement includes:

  • reproduces in any material form, performs, shows or plays or distributes to the public,
  • imports any article into Malaysia for the purpose of trade or financial gains;
  • makes for sale or rent any infringing copy;
  • sells, rent or by way of trade, exposes or offers for sale or rent any infringing copy;
  • distributes infringing copies;
  • possesses, otherwise than for his private and domestic use, any infringing copy;
  • exhibits in public any infringing copy by way of trade;
  • makes or has in his possession any contrivance used or intended to be used for the purpose of making infringing copies