Canada: L’Union Ne Fait Plus La Force : Une Décision De La Cour Suprême Consacre L’Éparpillement Des Auteurs

La Cour Suprême a publié aujourd'hui les motifs de sa décision dans l'affaire CAR-FAC / RAAV contre le Musée des Beaux-Arts du Canada.

En vertu de la Loi fédérale sur le statut de l'artiste (la « LSA »), le Tribunal canadien des relations professionnelles artistes-producteurs a accrédité CAR-FAC (Canadian Artists Representation / Front des Artistes Canadiens) et le RAAV (Regroupement des artistes en arts visuels) comme organisations représentatives des artistes canadiens en arts visuels.

En 2003, CAR-FAC et le RAAV ont entrepris des négociations avec le Musée des Beaux-Arts du Canada (MBAC) sur les conditions d'embauche des artistes. Plusieurs conditions avaient trait à la rémunération des artistes pour l'utilisation d'Suvres déjà créées, notamment pour leur reproduction et pour leur exposition en public,  deux droits qui sont reconnus aux auteurs d'Suvres artistiques en vertu de la Loi sur le droit d'auteur (la « LDA »).

Mais plusieurs auteurs d'Suvres artistiques ont cédé leurs droits de reproduction et d'exposition en public à des tiers, en particulier à des sociétés de gestion collective du droit d'auteur. La question se pose donc si CAR-FAC et RAAV peuvent prétendre négocier par-dessus les cessionnaires des droits d'auteur. La question soulève aussi le problème de la rivalité, dans le domaine du droit d'auteur, entre la LSA et la LDA qui sont toute deux de compétence fédérale. L'une a-t-elle préséance sur l'autre? Par exemple, le Tribunal canadien des relations professionnelles artistes-producteurs peut-il donner à des associations professionnelles l'exclusivité de la négociation de tarifs de redevances à percevoir pour l'exploitation d'un droit d'auteur alors que les auteurs ont cédé leurs droits d'auteur à des sociétés de gestion collectives qui sont plutôt assujetties à la Commission du droit d'auteur qui a vocation à homologuer de tels tarifs?

Pendant les négociations avec CAR-FAC et le RAAV, le MBAC a reçu un avis juridique concluant que CAR-FAC et le RAAV n'étaient pas habilités à négocier des droits d'auteur. En 2007, quatre ans après le début des négociations, le MBAC a donc reformulé l'accord-cadre qui lui était proposé, pour en soustraire toute mention de droit d'auteur. CAR-FAC et le RAAV s'en sont plaints au Tribunal qui a décidé que le MBAC n'avait pas «négocié de bonne foi» puisque son changement d'attitude n'était fondé que sur un seul avis juridique, que ce changement de position intervenait plusieurs années après le début des négociations et que le MBAC n'était pas sans savoir que CAR-FAC et le RAAV n'auraient d'autre choix que de rejeter la nouvelle proposition.

En contrôle judiciaire de cette décision, la Cour d'appel fédérale a, dans une décision majoritaire, annulé la décision du Tribunal. La Cour suprême l'a réinstaurée sur le banc le 14 mai dernier et a déposé les motifs de sa décision aujourd'hui, 12 juin. C'est le juge Rothstein qui écrit la décision de la Cour unanime.

Appliquant la norme de contrôle dite de la décision «raisonnable» plutôt que la norme dite de la décision «correcte», le juge Rothstein pose d'abord la question de savoir «si le Tribunal pouvait raisonnablement conclure que les 'prestations de services des artistes' mentionnées dans la définition 'd'accord-cadre' dans la LSA comprennent les prestations d'Suvres existantes» (parag. 15).

Le juge Rothstein trouve convaincante l'analogie proposée par le juge Pelletier, qui avait été dissident en Cour d'appel fédérale, selon laquelle les artistes sont, face à ceux qui utilisent leurs Suvres, dans une position analogue à celle des hôtels et des agences de location de voitures qui offrent un service en permettant à des tiers d'utiliser leurs biens. Le Tribunal pouvait donc raisonnablement conclure que les «prestations de services» dans la LSA comprennent la cession ou la concession de licences de droit d'auteur.

Le juge Rothstein passe alors à la deuxième question, à savoir si cette première conclusion crée un conflit avec la LDA. Le juge établit d'abord qu'il faut présumer que le législateur a voulu éviter que la LSA et la LDA soient en conflit. Conséquemment, il faut lire les deux lois «de façon à ce qu'elles puissent s'appliquer de manière complémentaire» (parag. 21).

Selon la Cour, la décision d'accorder ou non une licence de droit d'auteur appartient toujours au titulaire du droit d'auteur mais cela n'empêche pas les associations d'artistes de négocier avec les utilisateurs une sorte de «salaire minimum». D'ailleurs, le jugement précise que les parties, la LSA et la jurisprudence du Tribunal vont toutes dans le même sens, savoir que «les accords-cadres ne lient pas les sociétés de gestion» (parag. 24). Et le juge Rothstein de préciser que «La LSA ne régit (...) que les artistes, dans la mesure où ils choisissent de conserver leurs droits d'auteur.»

Cela évidemment mène à une autre conclusion que le juge Rothstein énonce clairement : les artistes ont soit la possibilité de céder leurs droits d'auteur à une société de gestion, auquel cas ce seront les tarifs fixés sous la LDA qui s'appliqueront, soit de traiter directement avec les utilisateurs, auquel cas ils seront liés par l'accord-cadre négocié sous la LSA.

Il sera donc intéressant de voir si une sorte de concurrence s'installera maintenant entre les sociétés de gestion de droit d'auteur et les associations professionnelles d'auteurs et, si elle s'installe, de voir si elle mènera à une bonification ou à un autre affaiblissement de la position des auteurs.

Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP

Norton Rose Fulbright is a global legal practice. We provide the world's pre-eminent corporations and financial institutions with a full business law service. We have more than 3800 lawyers based in over 50 cities across Europe, the United States, Canada, Latin America, Asia, Australia, Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia.

Recognized for our industry focus, we are strong across all the key industry sectors: financial institutions; energy; infrastructure, mining and commodities; transport; technology and innovation; and life sciences and healthcare.

Wherever we are, we operate in accordance with our global business principles of quality, unity and integrity. We aim to provide the highest possible standard of legal service in each of our offices and to maintain that level of quality at every point of contact.

Norton Rose Fulbright LLP, Norton Rose Fulbright Australia, Norton Rose Fulbright Canada LLP, Norton Rose Fulbright South Africa (incorporated as Deneys Reitz Inc) and Fulbright & Jaworski LLP, each of which is a separate legal entity, are members ('the Norton Rose Fulbright members') of Norton Rose Fulbright Verein, a Swiss Verein. Norton Rose Fulbright Verein helps coordinate the activities of the Norton Rose Fulbright members but does not itself provide legal services to clients.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
 
In association with
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Position
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Compliance
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Registration
Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:
  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.
  • Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.
    If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here
    If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here

    Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement

    Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

    Use of www.mondaq.com

    You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about Mondaq.com’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.

    Disclaimer

    Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

    The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.

    Registration

    Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

    • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
    • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
    • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

    Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

    Information Collection and Use

    We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

    We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

    Mondaq News Alerts

    In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.

    Cookies

    A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

    Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

    Log Files

    We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.

    Links

    This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

    Surveys & Contests

    From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.

    Mail-A-Friend

    If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.

    Emails

    From time to time Mondaq may send you emails promoting Mondaq services including new services. You may opt out of receiving such emails by clicking below.

    *** If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here .

    Security

    This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

    Correcting/Updating Personal Information

    If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

    Notification of Changes

    If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

    How to contact Mondaq

    You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

    If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.

    By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions