The Orphan Works Problem: The Copyright Conundrum of Digitizing Large-Scale Audiovisual Archives, and How to Solve It

Popular Communication: The International Journal of Media and Culture, Vol. 8, No. 1, pp. 61-71, 2010

Amsterdam Law School Research Paper No. 2012-10

Institute for Information Law Research Paper No. 2012-10

12 Pages Posted: 21 Dec 2019

See all articles by Stef van Gompel

Stef van Gompel

University of Amsterdam - Institute for Information Law (IViR)

P. Bernt Hugenholtz

University of Amsterdam, Institute for Information Law (IViR)

Date Written: January 17, 2012

Abstract

This article examines the problem of 'orphan works' against the background of various projects for mass-digitization of audiovisual content. Orphan works are works for which the copyright owners cannot be identified or located. The fact that a particular work is 'orphaned' makes it impossible to clear the rights and to legally reutilize the work. This article describes and evaluates six different possible regulatory solutions to the orphan works problem, including extended collective licensing and compulsory licensing. The article concludes that if one wants to make the vast European audiovisual cultural heritage available for future usage, regulatory intervention is indispensable.

Suggested Citation

Gompel, Stef van and Hugenholtz, P. Bernt, The Orphan Works Problem: The Copyright Conundrum of Digitizing Large-Scale Audiovisual Archives, and How to Solve It (January 17, 2012). Popular Communication: The International Journal of Media and Culture, Vol. 8, No. 1, pp. 61-71, 2010; Amsterdam Law School Research Paper No. 2012-10; Institute for Information Law Research Paper No. 2012-10. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1986876

Stef van Gompel (Contact Author)

University of Amsterdam - Institute for Information Law (IViR)

Kloveniersburgwal 48
Amsterdam, 1012 CX
Netherlands

P. Bernt Hugenholtz

University of Amsterdam, Institute for Information Law (IViR) ( email )

P.O. Box 1030
Amsterdam, 1000 BA
Netherlands

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