Annabel Grundy

Annabel Grundy

Film Project Manager working for BAFTA Research. I am distilling the Visible Rights Project's aims & practical learning into the online course: Unlocking Film Rights.
www.twitter.com/annabel__always

Location London

Activity

  • Hi Emma, it would really depend on the author's contract with the publisher - whether she had wholly signed over copyright to them in perpetuity or effectively given them a licence to copy/distribute on her behalf. It sounds like your case was the latter.

  • However as I said, it's difficult to answer a question about 'archives in general' as there are different kinds - from private collections, to publicly owned/libraries, to commercial, each with their own policies around collection and exploitation of works. Whether the archive holds third party material or only takes work for which it secures copyright at the...

  • Hi Joanne - an archive could physically make the material available to a third party, in an appropriate format for the production, once permission is in place for the copy to be made or used for said production. If you are researching footage, you can visit to research/watch materials without a copy being produced - e.g. researching the original.

    In...

  • Thanks Olivia - glad you found it useful! There's a lot to discover on Future Learn...

  • However it's a common (and understandable) misconception among many that - as a given - archives automaticall hold the copyright to the materials that they preserve, linked to general misconceptions about copyright itself :-)

  • Hi Joanne - I'm not sure if your question relates specifically to Huntley Film Archives, or to archives in general. Huntley Film Archives are a commercial archive, but there are other kinds, as you rightly identify such as librraries, the National archives and the in-house archives of broadcasters such as the BBC and ITV. Different archives have different...

  • Hi Kirsty, you would get them to sign a release form - effectively releasing their rights over the content of the recording to you. This is part of the process of 'bundling up' rights for a single film so that it can then be licensed/sold/distributed.

  • Hi Olivia - no doubt you got to it by now but the section of the course covering fair dealing explains when you might use material without securing permission first.

  • Hi Gemma, you may not be able to prove this definitively, but you could document all the steps you took to research the authorship, and all the answers (or lack of answers) received. This research would add up to 'diligent search' to determine whether the work was classed as an orphan work in the register. This research would also provide evidence if you were...

  • Hi Gary, that's right - the registration is another 'layer' that proves your ownership - e.g. it makes it easy for people to find and credit you. In the UK, you don't have to do anything (e.g. register) for copyright to apply - but it can help. The same deal applies for registering a script or posting something to yourself - this gives you a dated point in...

  • Hi Lina. In the UK, copyright is an inherent right that applies as soon as a work is created - you don't have to apply, or register, if you created something. If you made it, you own the copyright until or unless you assigned that right to somebody else (e.g. through an employment contract or donation of rights).

  • we are sneaky to keep you on your toes..! :-)

  • And the news reporter is not claiming ownership of, or seeking to profit from the work that is shown...

  • Hi David - the best example I can give here is news reporting - if permission had to be secured before channels were able to broadcast pictures, footage or clips of current events, news reporting would be quite slow and restricted. Another way of putting it is that copyright exists to protect people's rights when they create works, rather than to lock them...

  • Hi Belinda- good point. I would also say that 'one rule' is very hard to enforce as there are new formats and platforms emerging rapidly to the marketplace - for example we now have VR growing for consumers which may bring it's own set of challenges around ownership.

  • Hi Tajudeen - I would say strictly an 'author unknown' does belong to someone...you just don't know who that someone is. The section on 'orphan works' later in the course may help to elaborate on this.

  • Hi John, good point. This course covers UK legislation, and while we have a lot of similarities with the US, we do operate in different ways. Some UK film writers will also register their works in the US, so they feel more protected when taking their work to international markets. If the work was written independently by a UK writer in the UK then they hold...

  • Hi Gemma, good point. This course deals specifically with copyright rather than trademarks or patents - but a good place to start looking at UK law around these is the IPO (Intellectual property office)

  • Hi Gary - because copyright is an inherent right that you don't have t apply for (in the UK) it sounds as if what you need to do is find proof of who created the work, in order to determine who holds the copyright (and whether it has expired)

  • Hi Matt - strictly, EVERYTHING is copyrighted - Creative Commons is a licence mechanism, or permission, to copy subject to different criteria set by the copyright owner... :-)

  • ...so global platforms can offer small films the kind of scale that used to exist for US theatrical - but at the same time the marketplace is more crowded and the price point is much lower.

    I appreciate this might be a bit complex and off topic from just marketing your own works, but it helps to understand a bit about the business and where its going if...

  • I'd say the market for mid-budget films is changing, not gone completely. Witness the money paid by Netflix and Amazon for mid-point titles at Sundance earlier this year: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/sundance-wrap-why-netflix-amazon-860987

    Also interesting is the effect of a wide release strategy on what was otherwise a 'small' film. The Witch...

  • Hi Colin, you can get lots of information from the British Council, as above, and you might also want to look at Shooting People and BAFTA guru - both have lots of information for filmmakers starting out and hey quite often run a training day together geared specifically toward launching short films. My main advice with festivals is to do your research -...

  • Good point Kenneth - and for Eric - another way to look at social media is that if you're using it to promote work then you need to focus on attracting 'followers' more than 'friends' - this is part of building your audience, reaching out to them, using hashtags and posting in relevant communities alongside other outreach - e.g. local film events, film forums...

  • Great principles - identify your audience, target them, build community (of collaborators and audience), and walk the line between persistence & presence rather than spam and pestering.

  • Fun exercise and great to be walked through it step by step. I need to do mine again as I have the sparks coming out of the main base of the flare but not the end! However as I never manipulated moving image before I'm delighted to have even completed the task: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=154oCvs0Wk0

  • I am not apprised of the collection policies of every archive in the UK but it is theoretically possible that an archive (most likely a private collection) could decide to only accept donations (or purchase materials) that also transferred ownership of the rights to them, effectively giving the archive a (presumably quite profitable) back catalogue that it...

  • Great point, Matthew, and thanks for the reminder. I believe fair use has affected FOCAL members because they work with archives all around the world. Huntley Film Archives is based in England but again they hold international material and work with international clients. So they have to take both fair use and fair dealing into consideration, depending on...

  • Hi Didier and Sarah - week 2 has a section on creative commons which goes into more detail.

    Many of the images used in the course have been licensed using creative commons agreements, which you can see referred to under each image where this applies.

  • Thanks Martin - yes, radio buttons where there is only one answer, and checkboxes where multiple options can be selected.

    With the note about setting up a company - next week includes a sample performer's agreement that should help to illustrate how rights are transferred by contributors to the production company so that it is able to own the finished work.

  • Hi Kirstyn, but this is only true for some types of CC licence - many of them do carry restrictions and/or require attribution. It's also inadvisable to use an image that someone else may have shared citing CC without attempting to find the author and ascertain that the work is available for use in the way that you intend.

  • Hi Ollie and Sarah, thanks for this - the logic is that for an Orphan Work you would have been granted permission (a licence) from the IPO to use the work.
    EDIT - I have just looked over the question and you're right, the wording is unclear. I'll see if we can get that changed.

  • Hi Sarah, one benefit is that they would be able able to generate income from the works they are holding, by charging a fee for transfer, restoration, to the person who wants to use it (who will have obtained a separate licence for the content of the work from the IPO) rather than continuing to hold the work and absorbing the costs of preservation.

  • Thanks Sarah, Sarah and Stephanie - there is a section on Orphan Works in this week of the course, for information

  • Indeed - thanks Matthew! Week 2 looks at licensing in more detail, for information.

  • Hi Marco, yes, we look at Creative Commons as part of licensing in week 2. You may also notice many of the images used in the course have been licensed under different Creative Commons agreements.

  • Hi Barbara - the right to a fictional character can be a moot point, and challenges of infringement vary depending on the type of use made of the character by a third party - e.g. is it worth prosecuting fan-fiction, or a fleeting appearance by an existing character in someone else's work.

    Joe is correct that in the case of Wimpy the issue would be to with...

  • Hi Andrew it was typo and the correct word is 'list'. I have amended this now - thanks for spotting it

  • Hi Julie, there is a section on orphan works later in this week of the course, and we look specifically at issues relating to archives with a case study in week 2. Hopefully those will help give you the answers you are looking for.

  • Hi Melissa, Matthew makes a good point which is that copyright (which is a part of intellectual property (IP) law) relates to works that are 'fixed' - e.g. A novel, a play, a film - and protects them from being copied, modified or distributed without permission. The Facebook case does relate to IP, as the case argued that the idea for the site was stolen, and...

  • Hi Bridget, we will look at an employment contract specific to a performer in week 2, and the clause assigning the rights to their creative contribution.

    Employment contracts do often contain a standard clause or clauses relating to IP as it relates to work produced while employed by a company, whereby what is produced using company materials and while the...

  • Hi J Cook. In the UK, there is no 'copyright register' - copyright is inherent in works unless it is explicitly transferred to another party. The OWR isn't designed to take rights away from authors, but to open up access to works where the author/rights holder is absent. This is why every effort (a diligent search) must be made to identify the rights holder...