Cooper and Burrow, ‘Photographic copyright and the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court in historical perspective’

This paper provides an in-depth case study of the enforcement of copyright in photographs by certain rights-owners today: freelance professional photographers who derive income from the exploitation of photographic copyright. Referring to the theoretical framework of Guido Calabresi and A Douglas Melamed, the paper reflects on the implications of the case study for the nature and function of copyright in a specific context today. Bringing the experience today into conversation with the enforcement of copyright by professional photographers in past times (the late nineteenth/early twentieth centuries), the paper notes the influence of the bureaucratisation of copyright exploitation (ie exploitation through picture libraries) on legal decision making in a particular forum today: the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court Small Claims Track. The paper concludes with more general reflections on the case study’s implications for the courts and copyright policy-makers today.

Elena Cooper and Sheona Burrow, Photographic copyright and the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court in historical perspective, Legal Studies, Published online: 19 December 2018.

First posted 2018-12-22 08:48:16

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