These are only a few of the many recommendations, but they are the ones which we want to highlight to you . We really need institutions to use CC licences on their works, to clarify exactly who owns what and how it may be used.
The best way to safeguard yourself and your organisation against copyright infringement is to develop appropriate policies, advertise the policy clearly, train everyone in how to implement it, and follow it. For example, if you have a policy which says that ‘this material has been produced to the highest possible ethical standards and anyone with any concerns should contact xxx in writing after which the offending material will be removed within 10 working days pending investigation’. Then if someone contacts you, do what your policy says. Alternatively, you could just increase your annual insurance premiums to give you greater liability insurance in case of a breach (more on risk in a moment). Together with policies you could also use disclaimers: ‘the material provided on this site has been checked according to xxx however no warranties express or implied…’
A cross the UK staff and students are already uploading teaching and other materials to the Internet/web, especially to social networking sites. Failure to follow best practice doesn ’ t mean that you can ’ t do it, it just means that you need more insurance. If you have deep pockets and have little conscience you can put materials up, and wait for lawyers to get in touch. The ‘ best practice compliance ’ table developed in the OOER project was developed to assist institutions to understand how their policies measured up, in order to safeguard themselves from litigation brought against them, and also to establish their own rights in relation to their own copyrights. It is intended as a guide only and legal advice should be sought by those wishing to adopt good practice risk-management policies.
While copyright is an automatic right, data protection is better described as a set of principles. Arising from the perspective of patient consent (patient data is classed as ‘sensitive’ under the DPAct1998) for patient materials used in teaching, we argue for additional tools to support consent from people. When creating open educational resources copyright doesn’t quite go far enough to recognise the rights of people who are represented to be respected (whether they have copyright or not). Representation could be a photograph, voice or video recording, data set or patient story. For example, if a person has agreed for their photograph to appear in your open educational resources (they are a student, a member of staff, an actor, etc.), and they pass away, what do you do if their family asks you to take down the OER? (What you are legally required to do may be different to what you would choose to do, in principle). Therefore you are essentially operating ‘policies’.