Exceptions to Copyright 2014 – what they mean


Copyright exceptions have recently been brought into law as Government did not consider that copyright laws were ‘fit for the digital age’, and they wanted to find ‘a balance between the interests of rights holders, creators, consumers and users’. Copyright is the right to reproduce/copy a work, and exists as soon as the work has been created. The copyright exceptions mean that illustrators’ work may be used without permission under certain conditions for ‘quotation’, ‘parody’, private copying’ and more. Exceptions existed before, but the new or revised ones are more wide ranging.

AOI responded to the Government’s consultation on Exceptions in 2013, which preceded this legislation, saying that the proposed exceptions were likely to create uncertainty due to the lack of definitions in the proposed legislation. The exceptions may not be overridden by contract law, so a contract will not be able to prevent them, and this may cause issues for exclusive contracts if artwork is used under an exception when an illustrator has guaranteed exclusive use to their client.

To see what the exceptions mean go to AOI Campaigning News

The exceptions to copyright are for ‘research and private study’, ‘text and data- mining’, ‘education and teaching’, ‘archiving and preservation’, ‘public administration’, ‘personal copies for private use’, ‘caricature, parody and pastiche’, ‘quotation’ and to permit ‘accessible formats for disabled people’.

Illustration by Juliet Harris

17th October 2014

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