Copyright law changes

Posted by:John Costalas on Oct - 30 - 2014 - Filed under: Creative & Digital Freelancers,Creatives -

The new copyright regulations came into force earlier this month, introducing a new right to make personal copies of lawfully purchased copyrighted material without rights holders’ permission. They also introduce new limited rights to quote publically available copyrighted works and use copyrighted material in works of parody.

The new regulations are an attempt to modernise copyright rules for the digital age.
Going forward there may be an element of uncertainty about how the new exceptions should be interpreted and there may be short term disruption for those selling on the internet however the creation of a wider accessible market place for selling copyrighted content should benefit rights holders in the long term.

The parody and quotation exceptions are qualified by an overarching requirement that the use of copyrighted material is ‘fair dealing’, a concept under UK copyright law that essentially limits the use of copyrighted material to that which is necessary for a desired and permitted purpose and which does not unduly harm the interests of rights holders.

The reforms are more “pragmatic” than “comprehensive and there are calls to completely overhaul the existing Copyright, Designs and Patents Act but for the moment this appears too time consuming and challenging an exercise. In the future UK copyright laws are more likely to be shaped by EU dictate which is in their current agenda.

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