Authors and publishers can now rejoice, collective management in the realm of book publishing and related industries is now a reality for them.

FILCOLS or Filipinas Copyright Licensing Society Inc., a local collective management society, which the NBDB helped establish in 2008, is now a member of the International Federation of Reproduction Rights Organizations (IFRRO), the international organization of collective management societies based in Belgium. IFRRO currently has 56 member-RROs worldwide. In an email communication received by the NBDB, Mr. Olav Stokkmo, Chief Executive and Secretary General of IFRRO, confirmed that the IFRRO Board, during its meeting on 3 June 2009, approved FILCOL’s application for RRO membership in IFRRO.

On 26 March 2008, the NBDB Board, during the 164th Regular Board Meeting passed resolution 01-164 recognizing FILCOLS as the NBDB’s recognized reprographic rights organization to assist FILCOLS to grow their membership and to eventually qualify for membership in IFRRO. Its endorsement is good for three (3) years and its performance will again be evaluated on April 2011. The Intellectual Property Office - Philippines likewise supported FILCOL’s membership in IFFRO.

The NBDB Board is tasked per section 6 (c)of R.A. 8047 to “formulate policies, guidelines and mechanisms to ensure that editors, compilers, and especially authors are paid justly and promptly royalties due them for reproduction of their works in any form and number and for whatever purpose.”

The NBDB facilitated the formation of FILCOLS, as mandated in the National Book Policy 1.7 which provides that “mechanisms shall be formulated to ensure that the intellectual properties of authors and publishers are adequately protected through collective reprography licensing and other schemes.”

NBDB Chairman Dennis T. Gonzalez, is thankful to Paul Wee of Copyright Licensing and Administration Society of Singapore (CLASS), Caroline Morgan and Karen Pitt of Copyright Agency Limited of Australia (CAL), and Olav Stokkmo, Chief Executive and Secretary General of IFRRO for assisting the NBDB in establishing a local collective management society for authors and publishers since 2003. Atty. Andrea Pasion-Flores, NBDB Executive Director, is optimistic that this positive development will encourage local authors and publishers to collectively manage their reprographic and reproduction rights of their copyrighted works to better provide them protection against infringement and illegal reproduction of their works, while giving copyright owners fair remuneration for their works.

The officers of Filipinas Copyright Licensing Society are Virgilio S. Almario, chair (author, national artist); Karina A. Bolasco, Vice Chair (Local Trade Publisher), Lirio P. Sandoval, Treasurer (President, Book Development Association of the Philippines); Mariano L. Kilates (author); Abdon M. Balde, Jr. (author) Galileo S. Zafra (author); Jerry Vincent S. Catabijan (local textbook publisher), Rolando de Vera (foreign publisher representative); and Alvin J. Buenaventura, executive director.