Gridlock unglued

YOU WAIT for ages... and then three come at once. That's the rule with London buses, anyway.

The Newspaper Licensing Agency is a collecting agency set up by publishers. It licenses people who copy copyright works - for example commercial libraries - and then re-distributes the proceeds to "publishers and special contributors".

So when the NLA approached the NUJ to tell us we must get a licence from them to photocopy newspapers in our offices, it seemed like a good opportunity to approach them about giving some of that cash to freelances who own copyright in those same articles. So far, it has not distributed anything to freelances. So as Freelance Organiser I wrote to them and reminded them of this. I was pleasantly surprised to receive a very positive reply. The NLA are now working on a method of distribution and they have invited me to a meeting to discuss it.

Then along comes another one: an equally positive response from the Periodical Publishers' Association. The Freelance Organiser is invited for a meeting with their chief executive, and through the good offices of the Patent Office a meeting has been set up. The main item on the agenda will be the nefarious practice of seeking all rights from contributors to magazines. The third bus should be along shortly.

Last modified: 24 Feb 2003 - © 2003 contributors
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