Copyright and Digital Culture

An expert meeting on copyright, media culture, archiving and open source software.

Copyright and Digital Culture

Copyright and digital culture: table discussions

Mar 2002
09:00 to 16:00

V2_Organisation and the Virtual Platform organized an internal expert meeting about copyright, focusing on its relevance to interdisciplinary (art) projects in the field of image culture and digital culture. The expert meeting's aims were to identify problems and bottlenecks that cultural institutes are faced with and to clarify the wishes and interests of the cultural sector. The expert meeting was a first preparation for an international symposium on copyrights that will probably take place in early 2003. This symposium will look at possible solutions and will formulate a specific advice to national and European political forums.

The discussion about copyrights and digital culture can be approached from different angles. For this expert meeting it was relevant to look at copyright from the points of view of the various parties involved: the author of the work that may need to be protected, the legal entities that are active in opening up the work (cultural institutes) and managing it (commercial distribution) and, in fact, the end users as well. All of these parties' interests differ when it comes to copyright regulation.

Taking the various points of view into account, the following issues were distinguished, among others:


  • allocation of rights concerning content that is created by an interdisciplinary team (who owns which copyrights?)
  • copyright protection of content that is generated in-house
  • regulation of rights for material that has been created by others but that is being archived and/or opened up within a cultural organization: contract issues.

Opening up and managing content:

  • possibilities and limitations of licenses, especially those of open source / open content licenses, including commercial management.
  • possibilities and limitations of technical measures to enforce copyright protection (digital rights management)
  • potential problems with copyright, resulting from the combining of content from different sources (linked archives)
  • combinations of commercial and non-commercial management of the same material

End users:

  • the importance of the public nature of information and of the safe-guarding of the public domain; the role of cultural institutes in this

26 people participated from organizations, such as the Filmmuseum, Dutch Royal Library, Nederlands Instituut voor Mediakunst, NFI, NFA, NFrA, Dutch Association of Museums, NAA, DEN, Submarine, TNO, and Waag Society.


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