Technological advancement has created a new vista in human interaction, with attendant tension between the old analogue and new digital regime driven by technology. This strain is significantly caused by the ease of copying facilitated by digital technology and the Internet, making some scholars to seek the revision of copyright – or its disappearance.
Other factors that have worsened this problem include: the effortlessness in disseminating copyrighted works to multiple locations; the tension in enforcing digital rights management and the concept of fair use; the extent and applicability of the dual-use technology defense; lack of awareness as to legal implications of some actions carried out in the use of digital technology; issues of jurisdiction and conflict of law; and such ancillary concerns like enforcement of judgments in the digital age.
As a result of the porousness of the digital environment, there are genuine concerns by copyright holders regarding diminishing profits and increased piracy resulting from widespread sharing of protected works. Unless governments around the world make relevant laws to protect digital copyright violations, public goods, such as movies and music, would be produced at socially sub-optimal level.
In Nigeria there is still a lacuna in existing laws in relation to copyright protection in this digital age. Our Copyright Act, with its grossly analogue provisions, cannot be used as a weapon in the fight against copyright infringement in the cyberspace. There is, therefore, need to quickly pass a new law with provisions on anti-circumvention of technological protection measures. Until this is the done, we can only watch as other countries advance.