Country Case Study. Who Owns a Video Game in Spain?
How is a video game legally protected? In Spain there is no specific regulation that shields the creation of a video game. This absence implies that we have to conceive a video game as a mosaic of separate pieces and treat them as different works, in order to grant it comprehensive protection. Thus, on the one hand, it is necessary to process and register the computer program (software) that supports the video game. On the other, the same must be done with the visual part (audiovisual work). This Article deals with the protection of the software and the graphic part, as well as the catalog of rights inherent to both. There are many “gray areas” presented by the abundant casuistry, which is a challenge from the legal point of view. Due to the above, given that the legislation on the subject is insufficient to answer all the questions, it is necessary to resort to the jurisprudence of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), in order to clarify and delimit the scope of the different ways of protecting a video game, since, according to what has been pointed out, there is no glimpse of a proposal to standardize this matter on the near horizon.