Saturday, November 7, 2009

Hirtle, et al., on Copyright and Cultural Institutions

Peter B. Hirtle, Cornell University Library, Emily Hudson University of Melbourne Law School, and Andrew T. Kenyon, University of Melbourne Law School have posted Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for Digitization for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums ( Cornell University Library Press) on SSRN and here. Here is the abstract:
Digital communications technologies have led to fundamental changes in the ways that cultural institutions fulfil their public missions of access, preservation, research, and education. Institutions are developing publicly-accessible websites in which users can visit online exhibitions, search collection databases, access images of collection items, and in some cases create their own digital content. Digitization, however, also raises the possibility of copyright infringement. "Copyright and Digitization" aims to assist understanding and compliance with copyright law across libraries, archives, and museums. It discusses the exclusive rights of the copyright owner, the major exemptions used by cultural heritage institutions, and stresses the importance of "risk assessment" when conducting any digitization project. It also includes two cases studies, examining digitizing oral histories and student work.
Hat tip: Legal Theory Blog