Looking Forward in 2012
BySylvie FodorCrucial developments are taking place in Europe and around the world. A look back at 2011 will help us to look foward in 2012.
The Internet is a great tool. It has however become increasingly difficult for creators to live from their creation in the Digital Age. This is particularly true for photographers. Boosted by new technologies, Microstock pursues its growth while traditional agents are merging, selling, closing. Legislation is adapting at high speed too. A number of legislative proposals at European and national level will affect the framework in which business is done: if not well-framed, they have the potential of further restricting the revenues of libraries and of their photographers. Follow the links on our website to read the articles of 2011!
- The Directive on Orphan Works (Read CEPIC's Statemente here)
- The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Key Principles on the Digitization and Making Available of Out-Of-Commerce Works (Read press release here)
In these two cases, CEPIC would like to ensure that the specific exploitation cycle of images is respected and all efforts made to find the author. "Diligent Search" should'nt be a mere formality. Orphan books and out-of-commerce books contain "in commerce" images with a traceable author. Control of rights by the rightsholder remains the most effective way of clearing rights and collective management should be the last resort.
- The ARROW Plus project (Read succinct description here)
We are happy (and proud) to be part of this major EU project and are putting all our efforts so that ARROW does not create visual orphan works by lack of appropriate technology. Again finding the author should not be a mere pretence. Technology provides tools to support Search. This technology should be supported and adapted, not hidden or hindered. (Read Getty/Picscout's statement on the issue here.)
- In France: the Law on Orphan Works ("DR"), presently overshadowed by the introduction of the Directive proposal on Orphan Works. (Read blog entries here and here
- In the UK: the Hargreave Review and its consequences on copyright and the protection of the authors (Read comment here)
- SOPA in the USA and anti-piracy policies all over the world (here)
National developments are important too as solutions are worked out which may be extended to the rest of Europe. Extended Collective Licensing for example has been in use for at least 30 years in Scandinavia and strong lobbying is underway to extend it to the rest of Europe, regardless of the cultural specificities and level of organisation of the National States.
Over the coming 12-24 months, additional issues will come in the spotlight
- The proposal for a Directive on Collective Rights Management
- Legislation on audio-visual works
- Cloud Computing as part of the Digital Agenda
- Photography is likely to come back on the agenda as "stand-alone" photographs were excluded from the Directive's proposal
Intellectual Property is a Human Right in Europe but it's a tough job to defend it!
CEPIC has a small team of staff and a few committed board members. Considering our comparatively limited resources, we have reached a lot within only two years and since the election of Christina Vaughan as CEPIC President. We wish to pursue these efforts in 2012 and look forward to the support of our members. In the meantime, we wish all CEPIC Members and beyond a Happy New Year 2012!
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