Representatives from the Association of Photographers and the National Union of Journalists have described a meeting with the UK Patent Office to discuss concerns over the Gowers Review as “very positive”.
Gwen Thomas and Martin Beckett of the AOP, together with NUJ Freelance Organiser John Toner argued that photographers would be severely disadvantaged by legislation proposed by Andrew Gowers’ review of UK copyright law.
Gowers has recommended that private individuals should have the right to make a single copy of a copyright work by so-called ‘format shifting’
The two photographers’ groups presented a paper stating that should private copying of copyrighted works be legalised, photographers who rely on print sales such as those in the wedding & social photographers, school and fine art sectors would see their income adversely affected.
The AOP also argued that that the introduction of any such exception should be accompanied by a Government funded public awareness campaign about what is permitted and what is not.
EPUK understands that as a result of this and other representations, the Patent Office is ‘seriously considering’ an exemption for photography from the private copying clauses.
Draft legislation based on the Gowers Review regarding proposed changed to UK copyright law is expected to be circulated later this year.
More on what the Gowers Review means for photographers can be read here