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Learning the copyright lessons

Above: Learning the copyright lessons - cover

In order to stimulate the ongoing debate on how to update copyright licensing, one of the focal points of current government consultation following the Hargreaves Review of Intellectual Property, NEN and Consumer Focus are publishing this report on copyright licensing schemes in the educational sector. The report surveys the licensing schemes provided to education, and in particular schools, by collecting societies such as CLA, ERA, PRS, etc. It was commissioned by Becta before their closure from the legal firm of Pinsent Mason but not widely distributed at the time. NEN and Consumer Focus both submitted the report to the Hargreaves Review as evidence.

The report surveys the current situation and makes a number of recommendations to bring about a more effective licensing system which could reduce the administrative burden and cost to educational establishments while increasing coverage of copyright materials available for education use. The outcome of such action would remove current barriers to the effective use of resources, allow pupils and teachers increased freedom to operate within the scope of the law and relevant licensing schemes and support the effective delivery of a 21st century curriculum.

As digital technologies are increasingly used in schools the development of licensing schemes that are fit for education and learning becomes increasingly important. NEN has responded to consultations and calls for evidence about 'copyright' from a schools' perspective over the last four years and its formal responses can be found below.