The argument from Design

IF YOU contributed to Design magazine between 1965 and 1975, you may have had a letter asking you to grant rights to Digitisation In Art And Design (DIAD).

There are some serious copyright issues at stake here, so ask yourself:

  • you support education and libraries, but can you afford to subsidise them?

  • would you sponsor any other electronic publisher?

  • how will electronic publication or republication of your work affect your future livelihood?

DIAD is asking journalists for "permission to reproduce the material requested in electronic form, in all languages and all territories" which seems excessive for a CD-ROM prototype which is to be "accessed by those studying and researching in the education community".

NUJ members are being asked to grant rights for the prototype of DIAD, and for any "subsequent commercial electronic publication".

If, having considered the issues, you want to contribute, you should grant DIAD the right to digitise your work only under clearly-defined terms.

State that additional clearances must be obtained before any further use can be made, and do not give those permissions until you are sure how your work will be used and what your fee will be.

Insist on a proper credit. You could ask them to include current contact information, so you at least stand a chance of getting work.

If you want more information on DIAD, contact Pat Batley, the Project Director on 0181-287 0803 (tel. and fax). If you want more information on granting rights in this context or on some of the issues involved, then fax Janet Ibbotson of the Design And Artists Collecting Society (DACS) on 0171-336 8822.

BY Jacob Ecclestone

Sep/Oct 1997

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