We all get our students to sign ‘model release forms’ when we capture them on film, tape or digital recording device don’t we? Of course we do, we know our responsibilities to ensure we protect students, the institution and ourselves when capturing events for playback, archiving, repurposing, publishing etc.
Well we think we do. If we’re recording staff, students, guest speakers, presentations, extracts, and a whole range of materials which might be involved in a lecture then how do we cope with the issue of copyright given the number of people and sources involved. Beyond copyright, we also need to consider the likelihood that persons captured by the recording process are legally considered performers and therefore have performer’s rights. Add to this the issue of moral rights and I don’t know about you, but I’m getting into a mess even before looking at the detail.
I guess what we need is some guidance from some folks in the know… and here it is Recording Lectures: Legal Considerations, a document from JISC Legal which offers guidance on the rights issues inherent in recording lectures. The language is accessible, the explanations clear, and the short illustrative examples make it much easier to understand the rights scenarios presented. The document clearly states “This guidance is for information only and is not intended to replace legal advice when faced with a risk decision.” Used as such I’m sure it’ll help many of us adopt better practices and develop more thorough processes to ensure we tread safely through the ‘maze of rights’ whilst the law evolves and clarifies to cope with ‘new media’.