Academic Special Collections and the Myths of Copyright
This study compares the copyright and use policy statements posted on the websites of the special collections of Association of Research Libraries member libraries. In spring 2018, 99 academic special collections websites were viewed, and data was collected based on the following: 1) presence and content of a general copyright statement; 2) mention of copyright owners besides the special collections; 3) presence and accuracy of statements regarding fair use and public domain; 4) policies for patron-made copies; 5) whether the special collections required its permission and/or the copyright owner’s permission to publish; 6) whether any use or license fees were charged and how clearly fees were presented. Authors analyzed whether these policies reflect copyright law or went beyond it, unnecessarily restricting the use of materials or imposing fees where rights are in question. A majority of the sites included general copyright statements, mentioned other copyright owners, and mentioned fair use, but only a minority mentioned the public domain. Just more than half restricted how patrons could use patron-made copies. About half required the special collections’ permission to publish a copy, and a fifth said any third-party owner’s permission was also required for publication.
Anderson, R. (2014, August). Asserting rights we don’t have. Library Journal, 139(15), 12–12. Retrieved from https://www.libraryjournal.com/?detailStory=asserting-rights-we-dont-have-libraries-and-permission-to-publish-peer-to-peer-review
Association of Research Libraries. (n.d.). Who we are [Webpage]. Retrieved from http://www.arl.org/about#.W0ooLtJKg2x
Blackwell, A. H., & Blackwell, C. W. (2013). Hijacking shared heritage: Cultural artifacts and intellectual property rights. Chicago-Kent Journal of Intellectual Property, 13(1), 137–164. Retrieved from https://scholarship.kentlaw.iit.edu/ckjip/vol13/iss1/6
Browar, L., Henderson, C., North, M., & Wenger, T. (2002). Licensing the use of special collections materials. RBM, 3(2), 124–143. https://doi.org/10.5860/rbm.3.2.211
Brown, M. A., & Crews, K. D. (2009, September). Control of museum art images: The reach and limits of copyright and licensing. Paper presented at the Proceedings of the Annual Congress of the International Association for the Advancement of Teaching and Research in Intellectual Property, Vilnius, Lithuania. Retrieved from https://papers.ssrn.com/abstract=1542070
Butler, K. C. (1998). Keeping the world safe from naked-chicks-in-art refrigerator magnets: The plot to control art images in the public domain through copyrights in photographic and digital reproductions. Communications and Entertainment Law Journal, 21(1), 55–127.
Copyrights, 17 U.S.C. §§ 107–108 (2016.)
Crews, K. D. (2015). Museum policies and art images: Conflicting objectives and copyright overreaching symposium article. Fordham Intellectual Property, Media & Entertainment Law Journal, 22(4), 795–834. Retrieved from https://ir.lawnet.fordham.edu/iplj/vol22/iss4/1/
Dryden, J. (2012). Cavalier or careful? How users approach the rights management practices of archival repositories. Journal of Archival Organization, 10(3–4), 191–206. https://doi.org/10.1080/15332748.2012.787847
Dryden, J. (2016). Risky business? Issues in licensing copies of archival holdings. Archivaria, 82(1), 111–136. Retrieved from https://muse.jhu.edu/article/687084
English, R., & Bridegam, W. (2017). A brief history of the Oberlin Group [Webpage]. Retrieved from http://www.oberlingroup.org/brief-history-oberlin-group
Hirtle, P. (2003). Archives or assets? The American Archivist, 66(2), 235–247. https://doi-org.unr.idm.oclc.org/10.17723/aarc.66.2.h0mn427675783n5l
Hirtle, P. (2009). Removing all restrictions: Cornell’s new policy on use of public domain reproductions. Research Library Issues, 266. Retrieved from https://ecommons.cornell.edu/bitstream/handle/1813/14149/rli-266-cornell.pdf;sequence=2
Hirtle, P. (2014, August). What the University of Arkansas controversy can teach us about archival permission practices [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://blog.librarylaw.com/librarylaw/2014/07/arkansas-and-archival-permission-practices.html
Hirtle, P., Hudson, E., & Kenyon, A. (2009). Copyright and cultural institutions: Guidelines for digitization for U.S. libraries, archives, and museums [PDF version]. Retrieved from https://ecommons.cornell.edu/handle/1813/14142
Light, M. (2015). Controlling goods or promoting the public good: Choices for special collections in the marketplace. RBM, 16(1), 48–63. https://doi.org/10.5860/rbm.16.1.435
Mazzone, J. (2006). CopyFraud. New York University Law Review, 81(3), 1026–1100.
Miller, L., Galbraith, S. K., & Research Libraries Group Partnership Working Group on Streamlining Photography and Scanning. (2010). “Capture and release”: Digital cameras in the reading room. Retrieved from http://www.oclc.org/research/publications/library/2010/2010-05.pdf
Pappalardo, K., Aufderheide, P., Stevens, J., & Suzor, N. (2017). Imagination foregone: A qualitative study of the reuse practices of Australian creators. Brisbane: Australian Digital Alliance. Retrieved from: https://eprints.qut.edu.au/115940/2/QUT-print.pdf
Purdue University Libraries. (2019). What is a special collection? [Webpage]. Retrieved from http://guides.lib.purdue.edu/c.php?g=352889&p=2378065
Schlosser, M. (2009). Unless otherwise indicated: A survey of copyright statements on digital library collections. College & Research Libraries, 70(4), 371–285. https://doi.org/10.5860/0700371
Schultz, T., & Miller, D. (2019). U.S. academic special collections websites and copyright information and policies [Data file and codebook]. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.17605/OSF.IO/X8MPB
Sims, N. (2016). We’re not the ©ops—copyright, “compliance” and communications [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://simsjd.com/copyrightlibn/2016/05/31/were-not-the-cops/
Society of American Archivists. (2011). SAA core values statement and code of ethics [Webpage]. Retrieved from https://www2.archivists.org/statements/saa-core-values-statement-and-code-of-ethics
Somers, N. S. (2006). An investigation into the digital scanning of photographs in archival collections (Doctoral thesis, Durban University of Technology, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa). Retrieved from http://ir.dut.ac.za/handle/10321/113
Stim, R. (n.d.). What is fair use? [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://fairuse.stanford.edu/overview/fair-use/what-is-fair-use/
Copyright (c) 2019 Teresa Auch Schultz & Dana Miller
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.