Can copyright law be made really interesting and understandable? The answer is a resounding yes, as I discovered at a (dynamic) academic conference presentation by Dinusha Mendis & Hayleigh Bosher from Bournemouth University.
CopyrightUser.org is an online resource aimed at making UK copyright law accessible to creators, media professionals, entrepreneurs, students, and members of the public. It includes information for everyone who uses copyright, and also materials specifically for educators and schools.
UK law & more
Although the site is UK-based and therefore reflects UK copyright legislation, I am sure that those elsewhere will find the explanations of general concepts more than useful. In addition, the site includes several links at relevant points to international treaties such as the Berne Convention, TRIPS, as well as European charters, conventions and directives.
Authoritative and fun
The content has been produced by leading copyright academics, with a focus on accessibility, as you will see from the great graphics and multimedia presentation.
How it was produced
In order to develop the resource, a study was conducted to identify areas where the general public had uncertainties, by analysing FAQs and by interviewing creators across key artistic areas. The information was then tailored accordingly.
If you need more convincing there is a great little introductory video below, but I suggest you go straight to the CopyrightUser.org website and start discovering it!
Following a first step of finding out what was needed by media professionals, the researchers used the same model to inform UK A-Level students (∼age 16-18) by providing an insight into copyright. This would also be useful for people of other ages and overlapping professional backgrounds.
Secondly they produced a short film titled ‘Game is On!’ which incorporates various copyright concepts that are then discussed in ‘Case Files’. Game is On won an AHRC award in November last year.
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