[artinfo] Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts

Art&Education edu-news at mailer.e-flux.com
Tue Feb 10 08:25:39 CET 2015

Code of Best Practices in Fair Use
for the Visual Arts

The College Art Association (CAA) has published the 
<http://www.collegeart.org/fair-use>Code of Best Practices in Fair 
Use for the Visual Arts, a set of principles addressing best 
practices in the fair use of copyrighted materials based on a 
consensus of opinion developed through discussions with visual-arts 
professionals. It will be a vital resource for all those working in 
the field, including artists, art historians, museum professionals, 
and editors. Initiated by CAA in 2012, the multi-year effort has been 
led by Peter Jaszi and Patricia Aufderheide, professors of law and 
communication studies respectively at American University and the 
leading experts on the development of codes for communities that make 
use of copyrighted materials in their professional practices.

The Code addresses many common situations in the visual arts by 
describing the relevance of fair use in five broad areas of the 
visual arts field:
- Analytic writing: When may scholars and other writers about art 
invoke fair use to quote, excerpt, or reproduce copyrighted works?
- Teaching about art: When may teachers invoke fair use in using 
copyrighted works to support formal instruction in a range of 
settings, including online and distance teaching?
- Making art: Under what circumstances may artists invoke fair use to 
incorporate copyrighted material into new artworks in any medium?
- Museum uses: When may museums and their staffs invoke fair use in 
using copyrighted works-including images and text as well as 
time-based and born-digital material-when organizing exhibitions, 
developing educational materials (within the museum and online), 
publishing catalogues, and other related activities?
- Online access to archival and special collections: When may such 
institutions and their staffs invoke fair use to create digital 
preservation copies and/or enable digital access to copyrighted 
materials in their collections? 

In January 2014, CAA published 
Permissions, and Fair Use among Visual Artists and the Academic and 
Museum Visual Arts Communities: An Issues Report, a summary of 100 
interviews with art historians, artists, museum curators, editors, 
and publishers describing issues related to the use of third-party 
images in creative and scholarly work. The Issues Report, which 
revealed significant challenges in creating and disseminating new 
work due to actual and perceived limitations of copyright, was the 
subject of ten discussion groups held last summer throughout the 
country with visual arts professionals who deal with fair use and 
copyright issues on a daily basis. The Code is a result of this 
extensive research.

Co-author Patricia Aufderheide, university professor in the School of 
Communication at American University and Director of the Center for 
Media and Social Impact, said, "Codes of Best Practices have proven 
enormously successful in enabling members of other creative 
communities to do their work well and effectively. They allow 
individuals to make judgments knowing where they fall in relation to 
the thinking of their peers, and that lowers risk. Further, codes 
give museums, broadcasters, insurers, publishers, educational 
institutions, and their lawyers a new and valuable tool to use in 
making better, more reasonable assessments of risk."

During CAA's <http://conference.collegeart.org/>103rd Annual 
Conference in New York (February 11-14, 2015), the principal 
investigators of this project and authors of the Code, Patricia 
Aufderheide and Peter Jaszi, will speak publicly with Judy Metro, 
Editor-in-Chief at the National Gallery of Art and chair of CAA's 
Committee on Intellectual Property; Jeffrey Cunard, co-chair of CAA's 
Task Force on Fair Use; and Christine Sundt, former editor of Visual 
Resources: An International Journal of Documentation and former CAA 
board member. The session will take place on Friday, February 13, 
from 12:30 to 2pm at the New York Hilton Midtown and is free and open 
to the public. 

CAA's Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts is 
funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation with additional support 
provided by the Samuel H. Kress Foundation.


About CAA
The College Art Association is dedicated to providing professional 
services and resources for artists, art historians, and students in 
the visual arts. CAA serves as an advocate and a resource for 
individuals and institutions nationally and internationally by 
offering forums to discuss the latest developments in the visual arts 
and art history through its annual conference, publications, 
exhibitions, website, and other programs, services, and events. CAA 
focuses on a wide range of advocacy issues, including education in 
the arts, freedom of expression, intellectual-property rights, 
cultural heritage and preservation, workforce topics in universities 
and museums, and access to networked information technologies. 
Representing its members' professional needs since 1911, CAA is 
committed to the highest professional and ethical standards of 
scholarship, creativity, criticism, and teaching. Learn more about 
CAA <http://www.collegeart.org>here.

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