The prodigious development of modern means of communication has made it practically impossible for an author to exercise his rights individually.
It is therefore indisputable that an efficient organisation of authors - a Collective Copyright Administration Society - is the most appropriate means of protection of the rights of authors.
The Collective Copyright Administration Society is also the link between the authors and the users of intellectual reactions. This collective administration of copyright not only serves the interests of the authors but also accommodates the users' concern to avoid in a simple and practical manner any possible infringement of copyright in their activities.
Establishment of MASA
These are the main reasons which led to the setting up of the Mauritius Society of Authors - a body corporate established in accordance with Section 12 of the former Copyright Act of 1986.
The Mauritius Society of Authors, set up by an Act of Parliament (Copyright Act 1986) became operational in September 1989.
Aims and Objectives
The aims and objects of the Society are to represent and defend the interests of its members in Mauritius and abroad;
(i)to administer, on an exclusive basis within Mauritius, such economic rights of its members as the Society may determine;
(ii)to collect copyright fees from the users of works on behalf of its members and distribute those fees among those members;
(iii)to help in the preparation of standard forms of contracts for the benefit and use of its members;
(iv)to foster such harmony and understanding between authors and the users of their works as are necessary for the protection of the authors' economic rights;
(v)to make reciprocal agreements within foreign societies of authors for the issue of exclusive authorisations in respect of their members' works and for the collection and distribution of copyright fees deriving from those works;
(vi)to endeavour to obtain the transfer of membership of Mauritian authors who are members of foreign societies of authors and safeguard in favour of Mauritian authors whose membership has been transferred all the advantages which may have accrued to them before the transfer.
Management and Administration
The Society is managed and administered by a Board of Management which consists of:
(a) a Chairman appointed by the Minister;
(b) the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Arts and Culture, or his representative;
(c) 3 members appointed by the Minister of Arts and Culture;
(d)5 members elected by the General Assembly of authors in such manner as specified in rules made by the Board.
(e)The day-to-day administration of the Society is entrusted to the Secretary who is the administrative head of the Society. Following the PRB report of 1998, the post has been restyled Director
According to Section 18 of the Copyright Act 1986 (new Section 33 of the Copyright Act 1997), the Board of Management is empowered to appoint its own staff. International Copyright Conventions and WIPO. Mauritius has ratified the Universal Copyright Convention (UCC) administered by UNESCO (Paris) and the Berne Convention (Paris Act 1971) administered by WIPO (Geneva).
Link to MAURITIUS SOCIETY OF AUTHORS website: http://masa.intnet.mu
Besides, Mauritius is also a member state of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), one of the 16 specialised agencies of the United Nations Organisation.