In July 2021, the Institute of Art and Law, an internationally recognised society which promotes knowledge and education in all aspects of law relating to art, hosted ‘Photography and the Law’, an on-line Seminar attended by a broad international audience including photographers, practitioners, copyright policy advisers and representatives from collecting societies. Convened by Simon Stokes, a solicitor who is also known for his monograph Art and Copyright (Hart Publishing, 2021, 3rd ed.) and the IAL’s Assistant Director Alexander Herman, the Seminar included presentations from eight speakers approaching the interface between photography and the law from different perspectives.
CREATe’s Dr Elena Cooper spoke on ‘Photographs and Copyright in the Nineteenth Century: What Can We Learn from the Past?’, in a presentation that drew out themes from her monograph Art and Modern Copyright: The Contested Image (CUP, 2018). Dr Cooper reflected on key statutory and case law developments in the nineteenth century – including the protection of celebrity sitters – and reflected on the legal implications for copyright law of continually oscillating characterisations of the photograph and the photographer. Dr Cooper’s presentation was followed by talks from Elizabeth Walley, a representative of the Design and Copyright Society (‘The Role of Copyright Management Organisations in Licensing Photographs and Images’) and the solicitor and DACS founder Mark Stephens CBE (‘Privacy, Photographs and UK Law’), as well as a number of UK and US-based legal practitioners: Simon Stokes (‘Originality: What is and What isn’t Protected?’), Molly Stech (‘Fair Use under US Law/Fair Dealing under UK Law’), Megan Noh (‘Manipulation of Images and Moral Rights’), Noor Kadhim (‘Freedom of Panorama and Social Media’) and Adam Jomeen (‘Street Photography under US and French Law’).
The discussion and presentations at the Seminar included reference to a number of academic papers linked to CREATe, in particular ‘The Digitisation of Cultural Heritage: Originality, Derivative Works and (Non) Original Photographs’ (IVIR, 2015) by Prof. Thomas Margoni (Professor at KU Leuven and Visiting Professor at CREATe, and formerly CREATe, Senior Lecturer), the CREATe ‘Surrogate IP Rights in the Cultural Sector’ project led by Dr. Andrea Wallace (Senior Lecturer University of Exeter and CREATe Fellow, and former CREATe PhD student), the co-authored work of Dr Elena Cooper and Dr Sheona Burrow (CREATe Research Fellow) on photographic copyright and the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court Small Claims Track (published in Legal Studies and as CREATe Working Paper 2018/02), as well as the co-authored work of Dr Elena Cooper and Dr Marta Iljadica (Senior Lecturer, CREATe) on nineteenth century forerunners to debates about freedom of panorama which will be published in the forthcoming volume Circulation and Control: Artistic Culture and Intellectual Property in the Nineteenth Century edited by S. Delamaire and W. Slauter (Open-book, forthcoming). More information about the Seminar can be found on the IAL website.