8 April 2017

Reflections from Chairing CILIP Copyright Conference

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of both setting the programme and chairing the CILIP Copyright Conference for another year.

C80adorXsAIMUNI.jpg large(c) Fred Saunderson, via twitter

What an amazing day. Fantastic speakers and great audience engagement. We tweeted so much good stuff that we constantly trended on Twitter! There was loads to take on from our great speakers and of course our wonderful keynote, Julia Reda MEP

Presentations will be available, but in the meantime, I wanted to briefly outline my top ten key themes that emerged from the day:

1. There is an inevitable relationship between rights management and risk management.  The sooner we understand that, the more we can embed risk management and risk mitigation into our organisational policies and procedures.

2. Copyright can be hard, we have to deal with that and therefore work *hard* to ensure we put in place suitable structures and resource to deal with it.

3. Copyright is an important strategic issue, requires senior management support and suitable policies, procedures, tools and systems to manage it.

4. The devil is often in the detail of the legislation but we should not let this stop us from optimising our use of the exceptions to copyright.

5. Process and methodology are important for dealing with rights and for dealing with works where we can’t trace the rights holders (orphan works).  These need to be built into organisational frameworks and project management.

6. Copyright literacy means contract literacy and we need to be versed in understanding what we want, what contracts mean (Creative Commons licences included!) and how to negotiate (where appropriate).

7. How can we make our staff to feel safe to make proportionate and appropriate decisions about copyright and risk? The crucial role of training, staff development, and awareness raising.

8. European copyright reform is essential regardless of Brexit,  and even after Brexit whilst there will inevitably be copyright casualties, some possible hope may rise from the embers.

9. Copyright champions like us are fighting for appropriate and fair copyright laws, but ultimately we are championing social justice safeguarding the rights of everyone, including those most vulnerable, to access and use content.

10. Professor Charles Oppenheim is too good at what he does, and can never retire!

Thanks to everyone for such a great day. A particular thanks to CILIP and its staff for all their amazing work. Also, thanks to CILIP for asking me to set the programme and select the speakers, as well as for the amazing honour of Chairing the CILIP Copyright Conference for another year.

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