Artists' resale rights - a report, a consultation and a summer party

Today's the day that the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) publishes the report it commissioned from the Intellectual Property Institute, London, into the impact of the controversial resale royalty rights for artists on the UK art market. This right (see earlier IPKat posts here and here) was introduced in 2006, when the UK reluctantly but dutifully implemented a European Directive on that subject.

Right: paintings by cats have been excluded from the Directive, presumably on account of the copyright issues arising from their having nine lives

At the time the right was introduced, there were concerns that it would increase costs for the art industry. Examining in detail the costs and benefits of the right for both the UK art market and its artists, today's report indicates that the right has not had a significant impact on the art trade -- but there may be some difficulties with the way the system is running.

Left: artistic works are protected by copyright "irrespective of artistic merit" -- which presumably applies to resale royalty rights too.

The real Baroness Morgan has announced that the UKIPO is to launch a consultation this summer aimed at ensuring that the UK maintains a system that allows the art market to succeed.

In short, the right currently applies to works created by live artists. From 2010 the right will also apply to works created by artists who have been dead for fewer than 70 years. The consultation will look at the possibility of continuing to exclude deceased artists until 2012. The UKIPO is having a summer party at which it will publish its consultation paper and discuss the findings of the IPI report, as well as reports produced by others in the resale right arena.

If you want to read the report, you can download the PDF version here. The authors are Katy Graddy, Noah Horowitz and Stefan Szymanski. The report runs to 103 pages and it's packed with genuine data -- the first 39 pages seem to be the operative bit, though.

Says the IPKat, it's good to see the Intellectual Property Institute getting involved in projects like this: the IPI has the enthusiasm and the know-how to supervise IP research projects, delivering them on time and within budget. He wishes he'd been involved in this one. But Merpel asks, is this another case of the plain truth being spoiled by the real facts?

Why cats paint here
Why Katz paints here
Artists' resale rights - a report, a consultation and a summer party Artists' resale rights  -  a report, a consultation and a summer party Reviewed by Jeremy on Wednesday, April 02, 2008 Rating: 5

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