Report: CREATe Public Lecture by Carys Craig -The Predictable Decline of Fair Dealing?

Report on CREATe’s Spring Public Lecture by PhD student and Copyright Wiki Sub-Editor, Amy Thomas.


Dr Carys Craig, Associate Professor,
York University, Toronto

As part of CREATE’s Spring 2018 Public Lecture series, Carys Craig (Associate Professor, York University, Toronto) presented her findings concerning the origins and development of the fair dealing doctrine, as well as introducing her relational theory of authors’ rights. The lecture was held on the 21st of March in the Arts and Humanities Theatre of Glasgow University, and was chaired by Thomas Margoni.

Carys began her discussion by tracing the origins of the fair dealing doctrine historically. From its initial basis in the concept of equitable treatment in the 18th century, the doctrine moves to a more formalistic and exhaustive interpretation, with heavy colonial influence evident in the narrow readings of copyright exceptions throughout the 1900’s. Indeed, Carys noted that as at 1999 there had been no Canadian cases where fair dealing had been pled successfully.

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Research Blog Series: Oral Histories & Intellectual Property

For the Research Blog Series, Jose Bellido presents an oral history project collecting interviews with retired barristers, solicitors, civil servants, activists and academics, involved with intellectual property law.


Roy Nicholls, Stephen Gratwick QC, Geoffrey Everington QC,
Geoffrey Maw. 1968. Photo courtesy of Paul Everington

Project: Intellectual Property: Oral Histories

Investigators: Jose Bellido (University of Kent) and Lionel Bently (Cambridge University)

What did your research aim to do?
– Document, archive, and transcribe more than fifty interviews with retired barristers, solicitors, civil servants, activists and academics.

– Collect, reproduce and publish a number of unpublished material such as photographs of barristers, solicitors and intellectual property offices, sketches in court and syllabi of the first university courses on intellectual property in Britain.

– Write blurbs and produce biographical/historiographical data to introduce the interviews and the material collected.

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The Adventure of The Missing Note: The Game is On at the Icepops conference

Icepops 2018 – the International Copyright-literacy Event with Playful Opportunities for Practitioners and Scholars – took place on Tuesday 3rd April at the University of Liverpool. The conference was conceived and co-chaired by Chris Morrison and Dr Jane Secker, and co-sponsored by CLA, Learning on Screen, CREATe, IPAN, EBLIDA, UK Copyright Literacy and the CILIP Information Literacy Group. The event brought together practitioners and scholars from all over the world, including the US, Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, Czech Republic, Switzerland and Hungary. The opening keynote by Professor Ronan Deazley (Queen’s University Belfast) – titled When the Copyright Fun Stops, Stop! – highlighted the importance of educating about copyright by doing and documenting, by embedding copyright use in practice. He provided various examples of projects supported by CREATe that adopt this approach, including DAYOR, the Copyright Cortex, Digitising Morgan, and CopyrightUser.org. Ronan’s keynote ended with the launch of the new episode of The Game is On! series – The Adventure of the Missing Note – another innovative example of how copyright can be taught by engaging with the law in practice.

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Research Blog Series: Copyright History & Policy

Elena Cooper discusses her research in the area of Copyright History and Policy, for the Research Blog Series.


Painting by John Linnell

Copyright, History and Policy evidences the diversity of research at CREATe. Led by Elena Cooper, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Glasgow, the project explored the relevance of a study of the past, to copyright debates today.

What is the Point of Copyright History?, a CREATe Working Paper (2016/04) edited by Elena Cooper and Ronan Deazley, considers the interplay between copyright policy today and historical research. It provides a record of the discussions at a two-day Copyright History Symposium held at the University of Glasgow in March 2015, comprising a public lecture delivered by copyright historian Tomas Gomez-Arostegui and a roundtable discussion by five leading academics (Howard Abrams, Lionel Bently, Oren Bracha, Mark Rose and Charlotte Waelde) and chaired by Hector MacQueen.

Two original research papers provide specific examples of different aspects of the value of the experience of past times to a study of the present. In Photographic Copyright and the IP Enterprise Court in Historical Perspective (Legal Studies, 2018), Elena Cooper and Sheona Burrow argue that an in-depth case study of the enforcement of copyright in photographs today by freelance professional photographers, is enriched by casting that experience in historical perspective. While noting parallels between past and present, the article argues that a broad historical vantage point also enables us more critically to assess what is different about the nature of photographic copyright enforcement today.

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Research Blog Series: Human rights and the public interest

In the first post on the theme of Public Interest, Daithí Mac Síthigh presents research into freedom of expression and other human rights in the context of copyright, for our Research Blog Series.


Project: Human rights and the public interest

Investigators: Emily Laidlaw (East Anglia, now Calgary), Daithí Mac Síthigh (Edinburgh, then Newcastle, now QUB) and Yin Harn Lee (East Anglia and Cambridge, now Sheffield) (RA)

What did your research aim to do?
We aimed to identify what freedom of expression means in the context of copyright, and how this informs the understanding of other human rights in the context of copyright. A particular concern was how issues of speech, expression and communication have been treated over time, in different jurisdictions, and in relation to varying business models. We sought to identify what role freedom of expression should have in facilitating new business models, and whether there is a need for a public interest exception rooted in human rights principles.

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Research Blog Series: IP Infrastructure project

Robin Williams reports on University of Edinburgh research into the emergence of infrastructures for managing and potentially trading IP for cultural products, for the Research Blog Series.


Project: IP Infrastructure project

Investigators: PIs were Gian Marco Campagnolo and Robin Williams, University of Edinburgh. The researcher was Hung The Nguyen, University of Edinburgh

What did your research aim to do?
Over the last decade, the UK government has made a number of recommendations to re-evaluate its current Intellectual Property (IP) framework, the last of which led to the creation of a Copyright Hub. This was the major case in this study of the emergence of infrastructures for managing and potentially trading IP for cultural products. We examined the emergence of the Copyright Hub in relation to previous government initiatives. Our analysis offers novel insights into the complex dynamics shaping the outcome of government-industry partnerships.

This study has also advanced conceptual frameworks to address the temporal dimension of innovation drawing upon Garud and Gehman’s (2012) durational perspective and Abbott’s (2005) notion of ‘linked ecologies’. This moves the frame of analysis beyond its traditional focus on particular technology projects, with their typical linear narratives of whether or not planned and implicitly shared technical outcomes could be achieved.

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Research Blog Series: Living with(in) copyright law

How does the general public view copyright law? Lee Edwards presents research from the University of Leeds into this question, for the Research Blog Series.


Project: Living with(in) copyright law: What is it, how does it work, how could it change?

Investigators: Dr Lee Edwards, Dr Giles Moss, University of Leeds.

What did your research aim to do?
We aimed to investigate how members of the public would discuss the complex issue of copyright, when they were given relevant information and time and space for reflection through a structured deliberative process.

How did you do it?
88 members of the Leeds public came together over one weekend to discuss copyright law, its implementation, and ways it might change. Participants were provided with information about copyright from advocates and experts in the field and then asked to discuss key questions related to duration, exceptions, and enforcement.

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Research Blog Series: Exploring Unlawful File Sharing

Why do people pirate or stream media unlawfully? This question was investigated by Daniel Zizzo and Piers Fleming, and summarised for the Research Blog Series.


Projects: Sharing, Streaming, Stealing or Socialising? and A field Experiment of Detriments of Unlawful file sharing

Investigators: Dr Piers Fleming (UEA), Professor Daniel John Zizzo (Newcastle University)

What did your research aim to do?
Media companies are very concerned about piracy and encourage significant punishments for accessing, storing or distributing music, films etc. They estimate that it costs billions of dollars a year to the media industry. We wanted to find out why people pirate or stream media unlawfully. Is it the cost, the accessibility or something else?

How did you do it?
We carried out a review of all the existing literature followed by a survey, an experiment and a field experiment.

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Research Blog Series: The music industry and blockchain technologies

Jeremy Silver presents research from his working paper on some technology issues at the heart of blockchain and possible opportunities for the music industry, for the Research Blog Series.


Project: Blockchain or the Chaingang? Challenges, opportunities and hype: the music industry and blockchain technologies

Investigator: Dr Jeremy Silver (CEO of Digital Catapult and CREATe Industry fellow)

What did your research aim to do?
My working paper looked at how bitcoin and blockchain captured the public imagination, some of the technology issues at the heart of blockchain and a key dispute taking the bitcoin community in different directions with a bearing on possible music applications. I explored the kinds of initially superficial ways in which blockchain represented an attractive technology to the music industry and tried to capture some of the excitement and voices that have been generating so much deeper interest in the subject in relation to music.  Finally, I discussed how this might all unfold; what the opportunities and obstacles might be.

How did you do it?
I interviewed a wide range of individuals from technology visionaries, to heads of collective rights management organisations (collecting societies) to recording artists, to music managers and label chiefs.

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EPIP 2018: Paper Submission Deadline Approaching

The deadline is approaching for the submission of papers to the 13th Annual European Policy for Intellectual Property association (EPIP) Conference. It will be held in Berlin, Germany, September 5th to 7th, 2018 with a special attention on IP in a data-driven economy: New challenges for law, economics and social sciences.

Submission deadline: March 31st, 2018.
Notification of acceptance: May 10th, 2018.
Prizes will be awarded to the Best Full Paper submitted and to the Young Scholar’s Best Paper. Reduced fees will be available for PhD students.

To find out more, see the full call for papers.

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