Rights and Readerships: A Workshop with Authors Alliance and BCNM



The Berkeley Center for New Media was thrilled to partner with Authors Alliance to host a Rights and Readerships workshop on Thursday, November 20, 2014. New media has changed the way authors are able to disseminate their work and readers are able to consume their ideas. From open access platforms and the rise of e-publishing to online courses and flipped classrooms, the shift in technology has raised new questions over copyright and fair use. Authors Alliance founding members Pamela Samuelson, Molly Van Houweling, Tom Leonard, and Executive Director Michael Wolfe, along with representatives from the California Digital Library worked with participants to navigate these new concerns. Particular attention was paid to contracts instructors sign when developing an online course, in order to ensure that the instructor retains both their intellectual property, and their ability to update the course or disassociate themselves with the project in the future. Remuneration models for this type of course investment were also discussed. The workshop also dealt heavily with fair use as academics negotiated image and movie copyright clearances in their journal articles. The Authors Alliance further outlined a new handbook that should soon be available that will assist authors in deciding when and how to renegotiate their contracts to be more favorable to ensuring their intellectual legacy, and provided resources to this end.

Check out the photos below from the event!

Space is limited, please RSVP.
How can you use others’ work in your scholarship without infringing copyright? What rights do you retain when you create an online class? What happens to your copyright when publishing and how might that affect your future scholarship?

New media enable unprecedented avenues for the distribution and discovery of academic work. Digital scholarship can reach communities without the resources traditionally confined to the upper echelons of the academy. For many academic authors, the possibility of reaching new kinds of readerships promises a more equitable and rewarding scholarship economy.

But author empowerment is not a given—we need much more than technological possibility in order to realize this promise. In order to reach new audiences, authors need rights and know-how. This workshop will focus on the current authors’ rights landscape in the academy generally and in the U.C. Berkeley community more specifically. Our goal is to provide the skills and knowledge that will allow community authors to reach their dissemination goals.
Possible topics for discussion include:
Fair use—how to make use of others’ work in your scholarship and teaching without infringing copyright
Faculty rights in online courses
The UC Copyright Policy and the UC Open Access policy
Rights issues in collaborations and hackathons
Rights management and publishing—what it means to sign away your copyright
About Authors Alliance
Co-founded by four members of the U.C. Berkeley faculty, Authors Alliance is a nonprofit organization dedicated to advocating for and empowering authors who write to be read, supported by a growing international community of members. Recent Authors Alliance initiatives include efforts to demystify and simplify publishing contracts, voicing official positions on copyright reform and litigation, and producing guides on legal issues authors are likely to encounter.
About the Workshop
The Berkeley Center for New Media is sponsoring the workshop, run by Authors Alliance co-founders Pamela Samuelson and Molly Van Houweling, intellectual property professors at Berkeley Law, and Authors Alliance executive director Michael Wolfe. Discussion will center on the questions and concerns of attendees.