Kennisland has a long history of developing tools that explore and expose complicated legislation in the field of ++ExamplesSee outofcopyright.eu, copyrightexceptions.eu and rightsstatements.org. and related rights. On the 23rd of June, the EnDOW project launched the beta version of its diligent search platform: diligentsearch.eu. EnDOW is the Heritage Plus project ‘Enhancing access to 20th Century cultural heritage through Distributed Orphan Works clearance’. Kennisland’s Maarten Zeinstra is technical advisor of this project. The platform aims to assist cultural heritage institutions to determine whether an object in their collection is an ++Orphan worksIn line with the Orphan Works Directive, European legislation that directs the European Union member states to create national law to allow certain uses of orphan works by cultural heritage institutions..
What are diligent searches?
Cultural heritage objects cannot ++Limitations and exeptionsThere are limitations and exceptions to copyright. There are currently no exceptions that allow cultural heritage institutions to publish works that they have in their collections online. The orphan works directive adds another exception to this list.
See our research on copyrightexceptions.eu for more information. be made available to the public without permission of the rightsholder. When the rightsholder is unknown, permission cannot be obtained. This locks away millions of so-called orphan works in archives and museums. The European Union has introduced legislation that tries to remedy this by creating an exception to copyright for these orphan works.
To be able to make use of that exception a so-called diligent search needs to be undertaken and the work needs to be registered at The European Intellectual Property Office’s (EUIPO) Orphan Works Database. A diligent search requires the institution to investigate different types of potential rights holders of a given orphan work. This diligent search process can be quite complicated without the proper explanation.
DiligentA diligent search is required to make an orphan work available to the public.search.eu makes the tools available to make diligent search comprehensible for the heritage professional and layperson alike. The platform removes the barriers of understanding complex legislation and processes around determining the orphan work status of a given work and instead provides a simple set of questions to determine this status.
EnDOW has launched the ++Beta versionA beta version means that the product is still in development, in this it means that we are still testing the and expanding on the platform. of this tool: diligentsearch.eu. This tool guides the user through a diligent search process. It allows the user to save and come back to a search and share that search with other users. After a finished search the user can download a search report, which can be used to register the work at the EUIPO’s Orphan Works Database to obtain permission to use the work by the cultural heritage institution that has the work. At the moment, diligent search tools are available for the Netherlands, and partly for the UK, Italy and Germany.
KennislandDiligentsearch.eu makes it possible for cultural heritage institutions to structurally do diligent searches. creates the technical requirements and guides its ++Previous workThe project builds upon technology developed for outofcopyright.eu, a previous project guided by Kennisland. based on the legal research done the University of Bournemouth, The University of Glasgow, the University of Amsterdam and Bocconi University. This platform allows easy building and managing of complex (legal) decision-making. The source code of the project is freely available on github. This makes it possible for other interested parties to build upon our work.
Automation of law
This project is a good example of the increasing automation of law that we are experiencing. Especially the field of copyright is susceptible to this, as the industry has rapidly moved from a few stakeholders (professional creators and publishers) to almost every person with access to the Internet. Automation of law processes always come with a risk: will the legal requirements match the technological reality and the actions of its human user? While diligentsearch.eu turns complex legislation into a set of simple to use tools, it still remains unclear if this is sufficient to allow cultural heritage institutions to fully benefit from the Orphan Works ++Maarten has published an opinion piece about the Orphan Works Directive based on the academic reports of EnDOW here..
Try the tool on diligentsearch.eu
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