When developing terms of use for online material
  • Apply a graduated permission scale for different materials, users and uses, rather than treating open access as an ‘all or nothing’ prospect - eg posting more difficult materials online under ‘all rights reserved’ or non-commercial terms of use while easy materials are made available for reuse or remixing.
  • Encourage beneficial reuses such as translations and educational use.
  • Following the example of the Flickr Commons project, consider using the label ‘no known restrictions’ instead of ‘public domain’ for works that are free of copyright if you wish to limit any impression of a ‘guarantee’ or ‘assurance’ by the institution. Alternatively, provide no overt copyright status for works (granting or restricting use) but instead provide users with the information they need to make their own assessment – such as the name of the author, date and place of publication etc.
  • This information could potentially be coupled with guidelines to assist with determinations (eg a copyright page stating ‘photographs before 1955 will usually be in the public domain’).
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