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Friday, 17th January 2014

UK: Copyright Works: Seeking the Lost

Source: Intellectual Property Office (UK)

From Ministerial Foreword:

The UK is home to some of the world’s greatest creative works and the breadth and depth of our creative talent is the envy of other countries. Our creative industries are worth more than £36 billion a year to the UK economy and the sector employs 1.5 million people, while our heritage sector – which rests upon the UK’s creative heritage – engaged 73% of adults in visiting a heritage site in 2012-135. But in respect of orphan works we are losing out.

The UK’s copyright framework is the best in the world but to maintain our world-leading position we must ensure that our IP framework is flexible, modern and robust....

Licensing is a very important source of income for creators and investors, but where a copyright owner cannot be found then a creative work cannot be licensed. Orphan works can represent a loss to rights holders and to potential users: lost revenue for creators, lost cultural artefacts and lost commercial opportunities. We want to help both creators and users re-connect to these works. That is why both the UK Government and the EU have introduced new laws to allow the use of these orphan works in some circumstances. Not only will this create new cultural and commercial opportunities, but it should also help reunite copyright owners with their work – and with appropriate remuneration.

It is important that these new laws achieve their objectives of allowing orphan works to be used while protecting the interests of absent copyright owners. This consultation is your chance to influence the UK’s plans for implementing both its own scheme for licensing orphan works use and the EU Directive that allows cultural institutions such as museums and archives to upload material on their website for some types of orphan work.

+ Direct link to Consultation Document (PDF; 896 KB)



Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes has subsequently worked extensively in public libraries, chiefly in enquiry work as an Information Services librarian. In this role he has had particular responsibility for information from both the UK Government and the European Union. He wrote a detailed report on sources for the latter which was published by FreePint in 2007, and has contributed articles to FreePint and ResourceShelf. He is involved in training in information literacy and the use of online reference resources.

A Contributing Editor to DocuTicker, he also write reviews for Pennyblackmusic.

Adrian can be reached at adrian.janes@freepint.com

More articles by Adrian Janes »

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