Copyright Issues in Digitisation

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Information on some of the copyright issues when creating digital content on the web - licences, tracing copyright holders. Focus is on UK law, but relevant internationally

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Copyright Issues in Digitisation

  1. 1. Rights Issues in Digitisation Alastair Dunning Arts and Humanities Data Service, King’s College London i am not a lawyer do not take any legal responsibility small print i am not a lawyer do not take any legal responsibility small print i am not a lawyer do not take any legal responsprint small print am not a lawyer do not take any legal responsibility small print i am any legal responsibility small print i am not a lawyer do not take any legal responsibility small print i am not a lawyer do not take any legal responsibility small print i am not a lawyer do not take any legal responsibility small print i am not a lawyer do not take i am not a lawyer do not take any legal responsibility small print i am not a lawyer do not take any legal responsibility small print
  2. 2. Digital Copies <ul><li>“ Looking” at something on the web is the wrong terminology </li></ul><ul><li>Much of what you see is downloaded to your computer </li></ul><ul><li>Copies of original works in digital form are therefore proliferating at an incredible pace </li></ul> Immense copyright problems for artists and potential digitisers
  3. 3. The angry Mr. Hogarth <ul><li>18 th -century copying initiated law </li></ul><ul><li>Additions since then (1842,1862, 1911, 1955, 1988, 1993, 2003) </li></ul><ul><li>Copyright, Design and Patents Act, 1988 is the key legislation </li></ul><ul><li>An Intellectual Property Right </li></ul><ul><li>Subsists in creative, recorded output </li></ul><ul><li>Does not need to be asserted </li></ul>
  4. 4. Nearly everything is creative <ul><li>Original literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works </li></ul><ul><li>Sound recordings, films, ‘communication to public right’ </li></ul><ul><li>Typographical arrangement of published editions </li></ul><ul><li>But must be recorded in some format </li></ul><ul><li>Quality is irrelevant </li></ul>
  5. 5. Duration of copyright <ul><li>The author or creator’s lifetime and then: </li></ul><ul><li>70 years - literary, dramatic, musical & artistic works, films </li></ul><ul><li>50 years – ‘Communication to public right’ (websites, tv, cable), sound, computer generated works & performances </li></ul><ul><li>25 years - typographical arrangements (from date of publication) </li></ul><ul><li>Crown Copyright – up to 125 years </li></ul><ul><li>Historical / retrospective, anonymous, unpublished work can be more difficult to define </li></ul>
  6. 6. Who owns copyright? <ul><li>Author or Creator of Work … </li></ul><ul><li>… or a full-time employer </li></ul><ul><li>Multiple rights frequently exist </li></ul><ul><li>Ownership can be bequeathed / sold </li></ul><ul><li>Ownership of object does not give you copyright control </li></ul><ul><li>Beware of photographs </li></ul>
  7. 7. Rights associated with copyright <ul><li>Enables copyright holder to prevent reproduction </li></ul><ul><li>Owner has exclusive right to exploit the work </li></ul><ul><li>Infringement can mean legal action </li></ul><ul><li>Fair Dealing allows for limited copying </li></ul><ul><li>Author retains all moral rights </li></ul>
  8. 8. Copyright subsists ... Now what? <ul><li>Rights holder(s) might already be known </li></ul><ul><li>Direct contact? Or contact via agency? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Obtain rights by negotiating and then developing new license form or updating existing ones </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Performing Rights Society </li></ul><ul><li>Copyright Licensing Agency </li></ul><ul><li>Newspaper Licensing Agency </li></ul>
  9. 9. Developing licence agreements <ul><li>Needn’t be long; must be precise … </li></ul><ul><li>… but flexible enough to deal with technical evolution and future project planning </li></ul><ul><li>Sample models in existence, but will need to be tailored for individual projects </li></ul><ul><li>Try and exploit institutional help </li></ul><ul><li>Licence(s) must identify all rights holders </li></ul><ul><li>Clarify who holds the digital rights </li></ul><ul><li>Sample at http://vads.ahds.ac.uk/fineart/feasibility.html </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>What if rights-holder is not obvious? </li></ul><ul><li>Ideally, a legacy of documents provides this information … </li></ul><ul><li>… but this legacy often does not exist or requires much work to uncover </li></ul><ul><li>The Law does not exempt the digitiser </li></ul><ul><li>But many projects do advance if they feel they can defend their position </li></ul><ul><ul><li>I.e. Non-commercial, educational purpose to project </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Projects must judge risk of prosecution against advantages in proceeding. </li></ul>Tracing copyright holders
  11. 11. Even more issues … <ul><li>Digital Rights </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Digital objects have copyright too </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Database Rights </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Complex database design </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Publication Rights </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Discoveries can be rewarded </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Moral Rights </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Author have their rights too </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Eeek! </li></ul>
  12. 12. Even more issues … Data Protection <ul><li>Data Protection Act, 1998 </li></ul><ul><li>Data controllers must be aware of the possibility of recording data which can identify living people </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Implied consent needed for all personal data </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Explicit consent required for sensitive personal data </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Religion, health, politics, sexuality </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Exceptions made for researchers </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Data can be held indefinitely </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>May be used for other purposes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Non-identification of persons is the key </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. In conclusion <ul><li>Don’t panic. Problems can often be worked around </li></ul><ul><li>Obtaining legal advice often necessary </li></ul><ul><li>Negotiation and Organisation – Good practice </li></ul><ul><li>Management – Copyright can influence much of your project </li></ul><ul><li>As with most of the workshop, a project management issue </li></ul><ul><li>Identify problems early on - ultimately, it is your responsibility </li></ul><ul><li>Research – Tracing copyright holders </li></ul>

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