From Nikkei BP’s Tech-On site. A group of ‘cultural organisations’ including JASRAC, Japan Writers Association, Japan Artists Association, and Japan Cartoonists Association among other organisations have announced plans to create a website that will enable searches of copyright information on literature, photos and music via the Internet.

Aiming to launch the site in January 2009, the site intends to allow anybody to easily search copyright-related information such as copyright terms and right holders.

JASRAC and the group support (or rather are the proponents) of a movement for the extension of the posthumous protection term from 50 years to 70 years in Japan. The website no doubt is to show policymakers that the group is providing access to copyright information for those wishing to locate right holders of particular properties, which warrants extended protection of copyrighted term.

The Keidanren’s Japan Content Showcase may be linked to the site.

The group may have differing opinions with Keidanren about the future of copyrights and how legislation should be amended to aid either the protection or exploitation of copyrighted properties. (see previous posts)

The Keidanren Chairman Mita contests the claim of ‘high costs’ of using properties where right holders cannot be located: “I have received indications that it currently costs much to use works for which right holders are unknown,”