Events Watch – Emma Snow, eCopyright 2013

Events Watch enables new professionals to share their thoughts and learning outcomes from events they have recently attended (such as conferences and training) for the benefit of all new professionals.

This time Emma Snow will be sharing her experiences from eCopyright 2013.

After working at the V&A for 6 months I was given the opportunity to attend my second work related course. This time it was a CILIP organised Executive Briefing entitled eCopyright 2013.  The event, which was based in their London office, was headed by Naomi Korn and based on 7 speakers’ experiences and expertise. Each of the presentations tackled different topics, each linked to copyright. While seven presentations in the space of one training day may appear to be information overload, a number of breaks and a hot buffet lunch gave everyone attending ample time to network. A participant’s list included in our packs at the beginning of the day served as the perfect tool for those with some serious networking in mind!

The Keynote speaker of the event was Heather Caven, Head of Collections Management and Resource Planning at the Victoria and Albert Museum. I found this presentation interesting, as despite coming from inside the institution, it was fascinating to hear about the digital future plan of the museum from a different department’s point of view. The second presentation of the day which I immensely enjoyed was given by Dr Dafydd Tudur, the Rights and Information Manager at the National Library of Wales. His lecture opened with the words written by Carl Morris, a blogger in September 2010, who highlighted the problems with placing copyright on all digitised images as this was stopping the masses from enjoying their own or others heritage[1]. Dafydd Tudur talked about the influence that this blogger’s statement had had on the library’s digital copyright policy, leading them not to place copyright restrictions on their digitised images. He also focused on the effects seen as a result of this policy and the increase in their images across the web and an increase in requests for copies.

The main theme of both of these talks was undoubtedly the users (both digital and physical), their needs and how museums and libraries could continue to respect the artists’ rights as well as giving the public the kind of access they expected or desire in the digital age. Both offered valuable opinions and up-to-date knowledge on experiences that have affected the way in which their own organisations deal with the issue of copyright. They both highlighted the need to embrace and not run away from social networking and the positive effects that this embrace has had so far.

The last presentation that I am going to mention here was given by Charlotte Waelde Professor of Intellectual Property Law at the School of Law, University of Exeter. She focused on the latest copyright laws and policies, offering up some interesting points and laying them out clearly for all to understand.  It was through this presentation that I learnt the most practical information of the day.

Given the opportunity again I would not hesitate to attend a workshop day, conference or other more formal training on any of the aspects that face archivists throughout the day to day running of an archive.

Emma Snow


[1] C.Morris, ‘Diwylliant Rhydd: Gofyn i’r Llyfrgell Genedlaethol am ein hetifeddiaeth’ (Sept 2010) (use Google to translate the page if required)

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