The UK Copyright Hub

February 21, 2014

The UK Copyright Hub is a portal to provide facilities for learning about copyright, for rights holders to register their copyright works and for obtaining permission to use the copyright works of others.

By Richard Ellis on Friday 21st February 2014.

In May 2011 the Hargreaves Review of Intellectual Property recommended the creation of a digital copyright exchange to facilitate the streamlining of copyright licensing. Following the Hargreaves Review, the Government tasked Richard Hooper, former deputy chair of OFCOM, to investigate the feasibility of an online digital copyright exchange. The report from that investigation, published in July 2012, called on the creative industries to play a key role in leading and funding a UK Copyright Hub. In January 2013 the UK Government provided initial funding of £150,000 to help get the project on its feet, with a view to the Copyright Hub being funded in the long-term by a combination of membership fees, advertising and a percentage of licensing income for licences resulting from connection to the Copyright Hub. The first phase of the UK Copyright Hub was launched on 8th July 2013, with support from the UKIPO, and currently has links to over thirty organisations, including some of the key players in the creative industries, such as PRS for Music and PPL. Once it is fully functional, the Copyright Hub aims to provide facilities for educating the public about copyright, for rights holders to register their copyright works and for obtaining permission to use other’s copyright works. In particular, the Copyright Hub ultimately aims to provide a portal linking national and international digital copyright exchanges, registries and databases to make it easier for the creators, rights holders and users of copyright works to deal with copyright issues. For example, anyone wishing to use a copyright work will be able to simply search the Copyright Hub to obtain details of the creators or rights holders in order to request a licence. The Copyright Hub is due to enter its next phase shortly when it will link to further organisations and allow it to carry out federated searches. The hope is that with the agreement of its members, licensing of copyright works will become an automated process. Further, it is hoped that the new system will reduce instances of copyright infringement, reduce the risk of a work being deemed an orphan work and increase licensing opportunities, and thus revenue from royalties, for rights holders.

Swindell & Pearson Ltd is a firm of European patent and trade mark attorneys based in the UK with offices in the Midlands, Yorkshire and London. If you have any questions concerning the UK Copyright Hub, please get in touch with your usual contact at Swindell & Pearson Ltd or Richard Ellis at [email protected]. Richard divides his time between our Derby, Burton and Sheffield offices.

Swindell & Pearson has been helping businesses and individuals protect and defend their ideas, innovations and brands for over 130 years. With its head office in Derby, the firm also has offices in Stoke, Wolverhampton, Stafford, Sheffield and Burton. To find out how Swindell & Pearson can help you with any intellectual property requirements please get in touch via [email protected] or by telephone on 01332 367 051.