New Working Paper: Whither the creative economy? Some reflections on the European case

A new paper in the CREATe Working Paper series is now available: Whither the creative economy? Some reflections on the European case by Philip Schlesinger.

The culture sector suffers from a lack of strategic support and financial investment. The challenge is, thus, to promote and strengthen the contribution of the culture sector to the benefit of the European economy. The paper is also a chapter in: Abbe E.L. Brown and Charlotte Waelde (eds), Research Handbook on Intellectual Property and Creative Industries, Cheltenham UK, Northampton, MA, USA: Edward Elgar Publishing, 2018, pp.11-25. It appears as the first chapter in ‘Part I Setting the Scene: What is Intellectual Property and why is it relevant to creative industries’.

The paper can be accessed from here: Whither the creative economy? Some reflections on the European case.

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When Creativity Goes Open Source

In this guest blog post, CREATe Fellow Kris Erickson (former director of postgraduate research at CREATe) discusses findings from his recently published study, which explores how creative firms use free and open materials to generate value.

Fans perform a Sherlock cosplay at Melbourne Comic Con. Photography: iasarae

An enduring puzzle has animated my research for a number of years: ‘what inspires people to contribute their labour to an online community, when they don’t directly benefit from that contribution?’. We’ve seen people do this all over the web, on old-school discussion forums, news aggregators like Reddit, and social networking services like twitter.  The collective labour of online communities generates $ billions in revenue for platforms that do little more than provide an opportunity for communities to share their work with one another. In projects like the Wikimedia Commons, this labour is not appropriated for commercial ends by the website, but neither are individuals materially rewarded for their contributions.

As a busy academic without much time to generate online content myself, in an economic downturn when many also struggled to find and keep paid employment, I found this all very puzzling.

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Report: Presentation by Dr Ryan Whalen: A Network Theory of Patentability: Towards an Empirical Measure of Patent Nonobviousness

A group of CREATe staff and students met recently to welcome visiting researcher, Dr. Ryan Whalen, Assistant Professor at the University of Hong Kong, and to hear about his current research project. The project, undertaken along with Dr. Laura Pedraza-Farina, seeks to simplify the non-obviousness inquiry, using computational legal methods to create what he terms a ‘network measure’ of non-obviousness.

Determining when a patent application is, or is not, sufficiently ‘non-obvious’ is, arguably, one of the most intractable and uncertain legal inquiries known to IP lawyers. Traditional tests, established through US case law, adopt either a common-sense determination or a retrospective observation into whether the invention in question had been anticipated or suggested in the prior art. These approaches have, to date, offered little by way of certainty, are inherently either over or under inclusive and rely heavily on subjective analysis.

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CREATe contributes to Interdisciplinary Roundtable: Histories of Intellectual Property in Numerous Objects

Andrea Wallace presenting at ISHTIP. Image by Kirsty McDougall

Two members of CREATe – Dr Elena Cooper (Leverhulme Fellow) and Andrea Wallace (CREATe PhD candidate and Lecturer in Law, University of Exeter) – recently presented at an interdisciplinary roundtable, to celebrate the publication of an exciting new volume later this year: A History of Intellectual Property in 50 Objects edited by Dan Hunter and Claudy Op Den Camp (CUP, forthcoming 2018).

The roundtable, held at University of Roma Tre, Rome, brought together 18 presenters from a diverse range of disciplinary backgrounds, each examining an object as a means of elucidating broader themes from the history of intellectual property. Amongst the presenters were a number of contributors to the volume and these included Jane Ginsburg (Tempesta Map of Rome), Peter Jaszi (Uncle Tom’s Cabin), Peter Decherney (Mickey Mouse’s Steamboat Willie), Marianne Dahlén (the Ferragamo wedge), Michael Madison (the soccer ball) and Maurizio Borghi (the Player Piano roll).

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CREATe Deputy Director Honoured in Spain

Philip Schlesinger, Professor in Cultural Policy and CREATe Deputy Director, has been made the first-ever foreign Honorary Member (Socio de Honor) of the Spanish Association for Communication Research (Asociación Española de Investigación de la Comunicación).

The award was conferred on 26 June in the historic auditorium of the University of Salamanca, concluding the opening ceremony of the Spanish Association for Communication Research’s annual congress. The University of Salamanca is celebrating the eighth centenary of its foundation.

Professor Schlesinger’s citation noted his long-standing and wide-ranging work in the field of communication, culture, and related public policy questions, and also his international distinction.

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New Working Paper: An empirical study of copyright clearance costs in the digitisation of Edwin Morgan’s scrapbooks

A new paper in the CREATe Working Paper Series is now available: ‘I should like you to see them some time’: an empirical study of copyright clearance costs in the digitisation of Edwin Morgan’s scrapbooks by Victoria Stobo, Kerry Patterson, Kristofer Erickson and Ronan Deazley.

The inability of cultural institutions to make available digital reproductions of collected material highlights a shortcoming with the existing copyright framework in a number of national jurisdictions. Overlapping efforts to remedy the situation were recently undertaken in the form of EU Directive 2012/28/EU, the ‘Orphan Works’ directive, and a new licensing scheme introduced by the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO). This study empirically evaluates both the EU and UK policy approaches, drawing on data collected during a live rights clearance simulation.

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Upcoming event: Talk by Dr Ryan Whalen at CREATe, Wednesday 18 July

A Network Theory of Patentability: Towards an Empirical Measure of Patent Nonobviousness

Date: Wednesday 18 July, 3pm
Place: CREATe Hub, Room 404, 10 Professor Square
Booking: Email kerry.patterson@glasgow.ac.uk to reserve a place.

Book now for a talk by visiting researcher Dr Ryan Whalen from the University of Hong Kong.

Abstract

The nonobviousness inquiry is one of the most notoriously complex and contingent of all legal questions. The challenges faced by those tasked with determining an invention’s nonobviousness include understanding unfamiliar technologies and seeing the world from the perspective of an objective inventor, all while avoiding issues of hindsight bias.

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Report: Dataset Licensing Workshop – ‘Choose the Right Rights, Use the Data Right’

The recent Dataset Licensing workshop “Choose the Right Rights, Use the Data Right,” took place on Friday 29 June 2018 at the Hilton Grosvenor Hotel, Glasgow. The Dataset Licensing Project  is the result of collaboration between CREATe, the Research Information Management team at the University of Glasgow, and JISC. The project aims to identify specific issues around the licensing of datasets, including the current move towards increasingly Open Access resources, and to facilitate deeper understanding and greater confidence in dealing with these complex issues.

This whole day workshop was the third in a series of events which brought together professionals from a variety of backgrounds, with the aim of building on their existing understanding of the issues in addition to providing a forum for discussion and sharing of experience.

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Why the incoming EU copyright law will undermine the free internet – An opinion by Dr Thomas Margoni, published in The Conversation

Continue reading on The Conversation.

The European Union’s proposed reform of copyright law has reached a critical stage as the one of its key legislative measures approaches its European Parliament vote of approval.

The first major update to copyright legislation in almost 20 years, the intention of the Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market is to modernise and make it fit for the digital age. But some very problematic provisions have entered the draft text and been recently approved by the European parliamentary legal affairs committee. Which means that the current proposal, with all its problems, has a good chance of becoming law very soon, depending on the final plenary European Parliament vote on July 5.

This is something you should care about

There are many aspects to the EU’s current copyright reform package, of which some are unquestionably good ideas. But the copyright directive, specifically, has generated a lot of concern – and public campaigns for action – due to three provisions that will significantly affect the online life of millions of citizens, and not necessarily for the better. These three provisions are the right for press publishers, filtering obligations, and the provision dealing with text and data mining. We have already discussed this last provision, and so will focus here on the other two, more controversial measures.

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CREATe contributes to CASRAI UK Reconnect 2018

On Tuesday 26 June, I was invited to participate in the CASRAI UK Reconnect 2018 conference, at the Grosvenor Hilton Hotel, Glasgow. The breakout session, ‘Dataset Licensing’, offered participants an opportunity to discuss this increasingly challenging issue, which has particular relevance to those working in the area of Research Administration. Alongside Valerie McCutcheon, Research Information Manager (University of Glasgow), I led discussion around terminology, selected from the CASRAI dictionary and identified as potentially problematic, and offered expertise where issues touched on law and copyright.

Among these, the term ‘dataset’ predominated, with participants noting that the term was often misunderstood and that datasets themselves were  hugely complex to manage. There was also discussion around the subject of the term ‘personal data’, with participants noting the impact of recent GDPR legislation and questioning the different legal and ethical treatment of ‘personal data’ within a research environment.

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