Friday 30 January 2015

No change (for now) for "2039" Unpublished Works

Yesterday, the IPO published the outcome of its consultation on changing the rules regarding so-called unpublished works subject to the so-called 2039 rule.  Broadly speaking, these are unpublished works which, under transitional provisions introduced at the time the CDPA 1988 came into force, will remain in copyright until 2039, even if (in some cases) they were written long ago by authors who cannot have survived until 1945 (i.e. 70 years ago)

Ben wrote about the original consultation on this blog here pointing out that the most vocal lobbying on the issue had come from CILIP, on behalf of libraries, museums and archives.

Those same lobbyists will no doubt be deeply disappointed that the consultation response decides to take no action for now, other than to undertake further discussions to deal with some of the difficult issues raised by various consultation respondees.

At least this is one issue ticked off the "to do" list at the IPO in what looks like being a busy year for copyright policy, led by the European agenda.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So: a handful of greedy authors' estates, who have done nothing with the works in question for over 70 years, get to block online access to material in libraries and archives for the entire country.


(Though apparently there is still hope that the upcoming EU revisions might require the UK to harmonise its law on unpublished material with those of the rest of Europe).