On the 6th Day of Copyright Christmas …

On the sixth day of Copyright Christmas, my true love gave to me: six submissions to the Productivity Commission Review of Intellectual Property five new information sheets from the Australian Copyright Council (ACC), four steps for using Readings Online self servicethree copyright news articles,  two quick and easy ways to get my subject readings ready for 2017 and 1 copyright compliant video on Youtube.

As we wait both for the Big Guy to arrive and for the Final Report from the Productivity Commission’s review of IP (some of us more impatiently than others!); celebrate Christmas by catching up on post-draft submissions made by universities. Particularly relevant intellectual property arrangements include the ‘Fair Dealing’ exception, ‘Open Access’, and ‘Safe Harbour’ recommendations.  6th-day
Universities Australia (UA) argues that Australia’s present copyright laws are inflexible and unbalanced, and block Australian universities from making full use of cutting edge digital technologies, such as data and text mining in research, and limit how we deliver innovative content via Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). UA believes these laws prevent Australian academics from fully engaging with colleagues and the broader community and stand in the way of Australian universities collaborating with business and industry.

A ‘fair use’ exception would make it easier for universities to use and make available copyright material for educational and research purposes, as well as engaging with the wider academic community. From a university’s perspective, a broader, open-ended exception that focuses on fairness would remove unnecessary and costly administration.  Peter Martin, Economic Editor of The Age has written a great piece on why we need fair use.

See the full submissions from the six universities, including UoM, that responded to the Productivity Commissions Draft Report. The Final Report is due to be tabled in 2017.

  1. University of Melbourne
  2. University of Queensland
  3. University of South Australia
  4. Swinburne University
  5. University of Technology of Sydney
  6. University of Sydney
Image credit : white male 3d man by Peggy_Marco From Pixabay.com CC0

On the 5th Day of Copyright Christmas…

On the fifth day of Copyright Christmas, my true love gave to me: five new information sheets from the Australian Copyright Council (ACC), four steps for using Readings Online self servicethree copyright news articles,  two quick and easy ways to get my subject readings ready for 2017 and 1 copyright compliant video on Youtube.

Back in October, we posted about the ACC’s ebooks to which the Library has a subscription for staff and students.  In addition to ebooks, the ACC also publishes Information Sheets on a wide range of copyright matters.  The Information Sheets are freely available via the ACC’s website and are a great source of information.  They are a great supplement to the ebooks or for topics that are not big enough for an ebook.  The Information Sheets also complement the information available from our own website and address topics that we may not have covered in detail.

Recently, the ACC have released five new information sheets:

Design Objects and Copyright

Educational Institutions and Libraries: Using Book Covers

Fanfiction and Copyright

Thumbnails Images

The Marrakesh Treaty (to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled)

All of these resources can be downloaded for free from the ACC website (and make great holiday reading!!)

You can also see the complete list of ACC information sheets on the ACC website. 

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Image credit – Adorable Angel image by Alexas_Fotos From Pixabay.com


On the 4th Day of Copyright Christmas…

On the fourth day of Copyright Christmas, my true love gave to me: four steps for using Readings Online self service, three copyright news articles,  two quick and easy ways to get my subject readings ready for 2017 and 1 copyright compliant video on Youtube.

As we told you on 2nd day of Copyright Christmas there are two ways to use Readings Online.  You can either give us your reading list and we’ll upload your reading list or you can upload it yourself by following these 4 ‘easy to follow steps’ .

  1. Add Readings Online to an LMS content page
  2. Add your PDF and website readings
  3. Import your journal readings using a RIS file
  4. Get ready to teach

Step 1. Add Readings Online to an LMS content page

  • Log in to the LMS and open your subject. Ensure Edit Mode is ON
  • Open the content page where you want to add the link. From the Tools menu, select Readings Online
  • The Create Link template will open. Complete as follows:
    • Name – Modify the link name, e.g. Readings Online
    • Description – Type a description in plain text if desired.
    • Do NOT ‘copy & paste’ or use text formatting, such as hard returns, formatting or special characters
    • Available to users – Tick ‘yes’ to make link available for students to view
    • Submit – Save changes and create link
  • The Readings Online link will appear at the bottom of the page and can be ‘dragged and dropped’ to another position on the page, as desired.

Step 2. Add your PDF and website readings

  • From the readings page menu, click Add and select either New Book Reading or New Website Reading
  • Fill in the new reading form with the details of your reading.
    • Required details must be completed, Optional fields can be inputted if you would like to
    • Duration you must enter the dates the reading is required. The duration of a reading should cover the teaching semester and must not exceed the end of the calendar year
    • Required reading, indicated by selecting yes or no
    • Select File to upload a PDF document or Link to add a URL to an online document.
  • The reading you have created will appear in your Ungrouped readings folder

Step 3. Import your journal readings using a RIS file

Most reference software has the ability to export a reference list to RIS file, such as EndNote and Zotero. The Library’s Discovery Search (http://library.unimelb.edu.au/) also exports results in RIS format. Contact Readings Online for specific help with these tools if required.

  • From the eReserve readings page click Add and select Readings from file.
  • From the ‘Add readings from file’ template click Select a file.
  • Locate your RIS file, select the required file and click Your file name will appear in the box.
  • Fill in the Availability information for your reading
  • Click on Submit to The message ‘Your request has been received. Expect an email shortly.” will appear in green at the top of your screen and in a short while an email confirmation will be sent to you.
  • Click on Refresh at the top of your screen and your new readings will appear in your Ungrouped readings folder
  • Readings with links to online content will automatically display an active status if all the information is available.

Step 4. Get ready to teach

Create a folder to group readings, or reorder you readings:

  • Select New Group.
  • Give your group a name (e.g. Week 1).
  • Drag and drop your readings into the group.

Review your readings for Required/Optional, add a note to students or update the link location:

  • Select Edit Your Reading.
  • To change Required/Optional, toggle the required reading: yes/no button.
  • Enter any instructions to students in the ‘notes to students:’ field.
  • Review and update the link location using the Choose a New Reading/ View this reading buttons.

Additional help and instructions are available via the our guides on the Readings Online website.

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Image credit: Santa image by Alexas-Fotos. From Pixabay.com


On the 3rd Day of Copyright Christmas…

On the third day of Copyright Christmas, my true love gave to me: three copyright news articles,  two quick and easy ways to get my subject readings ready for 2017 and 1 copyright compliant video on Youtube.

Enjoy some copyright themed Christmas holiday readings with some recent copyright news articles.

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From The Age, Jeremy Clarkson’s The Grand Tour is the most illegally downloaded show in history.  The Grand Tour is Jeremy Clarkson’s replacement for Top Gear.  It’s available on Amazon’s video on demand platform but rather than pay to access the show, many people are choosing to download it illegally.  7.9 million people have downloaded it illegally – to put that into perspective a big event TV show in Australia like the AFL Grand Final or the Masterchef Finale would have 2-3 million viewers on free to air TV.  Of course, access to Amazon video is geoblocked in many countries which means that not everyone is able to access the Grand Tour even if they were willing to pay.  This is one of the unfortunate aspects to copyright, copyright owners have the right to decide where and when their work is made available so they can choose to only make it available in a particular country or to charge different prices for people in different countries to access.  This can be very frustrating for fans who want to access their favourite book, film, TV show, music or video game and as a result many fans will download material illegally if they can get access legitimately.  While restrictions like geoblocking are not an excuse for piracy, it’s important for copyright owners to think about how best to provide access for users which can help to reduce illegal downloads.

Remember if you are having trouble accessing content for University purposes because what you want has been geoblocked or doesn’t appear to be available via legitimate channels, come and talk to us as we can help you to find a legitimate copy of the work.

Carrying on our theme of infringing content, ABC News features an article about photographers dealing with instances where copies of their own work have been used without their permission – Stolen images: Limestone Coast photographers fighting back against online theft.  It is a common misconception that material available on the web is not protected by copyright and therefore if it is free to be shared or reused.  This is particularly so with images as they are easy to share on social media.  Often images do not have any attribution details or copyright information attached to them to let people know that copyright applies. In many cases permission is required from the photographer to share or use their work.  In past blog posts, we have often spoken about how you can source images that can be legitimately reused for research, teaching and other University activities.  If you’re very good maybe Santa will write an updated post on sourcing images for Copyright Christmas…..

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Our final article comes from News.com.au –  Australian celebrities join the copyright war amid debate over ‘fair use’ provisions.  The Productivity Commission recently conducted a review of Intellectual Property in Australia.  In it’s final report, the PC recommended the introduction of a  US style ‘fair use’ provision to replace the current fair dealing provision.  Back in 2012, the Australian Law Reform Commission also recommended the introduction of ‘fair use’ as part of their review of Copyright and the Digital economy.  As yet, the federal government has not yet responded to either the PC or the ALRC’s recommendation about whether or not it would consider introducing ‘fair use’.  However, author, creators, publishers and other content creators have already began a public campaign against ‘fair use’ (and some of the other recommendations) that they believe are harmful to authors and creators and could potentially threaten their livelihood. The University has indicated it’s support for ‘fair use’ as we believe that it will provide more flexibility to copyright and allow the law to better keep up with technology.  Fair use is important in that there are currently lots of actions that have minimal impact on authors and creators but are actually an infringement of copyright.  For example, it is legal for you to copy a music CD that you own onto your smart phone to listen to but it is not legal for you to copy a film from a DVD that you own to watch.  Fair use would address inconsistencies like that in the Copyright Act making it easier for people to understand what they can and cannot do.  This would help cut down on infringement and as a result protect the rights of authors and creators.  We’ll be talking lots more about fair use and possible amendments to copyright in 2017.

Image credits – Car image by Foundry, Frog image by Alexas_Fotos.  Both images from Pixabay.com


On the 2nd Day of Copyright Christmas…

On the second day of Copyright Christmas, my true love gave to me two quick and easy ways to get my subject readings ready for 2017 and 1 copyright compliant video on Youtube.

If you are racing to get your subject readings uploaded to the LMS before you finish up for your summer holidays, then Readings Online can help.  There are two quick and easy ways to use Readings Online.  The first (and quickest and easiest) is to simply email your reading list to readings-online@unimelb.edu.au and we’ll manage the rest for you.  While it doesn’t matter what format your reading list is in, as we can upload your readings regardless, if your reading list is already in either an Endnote Library or Refworks Library and can be exported as a RIS file – this makes uploading quicker and easier.

Alternatively, if you would like to use Readings Online but would prefer to upload your own subject reading, you can use Readings Online self service.  Easy to follow guides on uploading readings are available from the Readings Online website and if you need help you can either email us or call on X48069.

Either way, if you follow these suggestions, your readings will soon be available via your LMS page and it will be one more thing to tick of your to do list and you can sit back and relax.  If only Christmas shopping was as easy!

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On the 1st Day of Copyright Christmas…

…my true love gave to me…  We thought we’d get into the spirit of Christmas by doing a copyright themed 12 days of Copyright Christmas.   So to kick things off…

On the first day of Copyright Christmas, my true love gave to me 1 copyright compliant Youtube video and it even features the Muppets!!!  Who know copyright compliance could be adorable!

If you are going to link to YouTube videos (or any content on the web) make sure that the content is not infringing (i.e. has been uploaded with permission from the copyright owner).  We’ve put together some tips on how to identify legitimate content.  Our muppet Christmas carole comes from the Muppet’s official Youtube channel.

It’s easy to embed Youtube videos into your website and if you are embedding content, you do not need to seek permission from the copyright owner. To embed a Youtube video simply click on Share and then embed, copy the link provided and paste it into your website.

So sit back and enjoy some Christmas festive cheer and keep up to date with what’s happening in the world of copyright as we post the 12 Days of (Copyright) Christmas!


LMS and Readings Online unavailable 5 and 6 December

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The Learning Management System (LMS) and Readings Online will be unavailable during the scheduled LMS maintenance window from 7:00am Monday 5 December – 5.00pm Tuesday 6 December. We apologise for the inconvenience this may cause.

We are encouraging staff and students to download any material required from Readings Online before the shutdown.  Staff and students will still be able to access digital content such as ebooks and journal articles via the catalogue and Discovery.  Simple instructions on how to do this are available from:

How to Access eBooks when Readings Online is Unavailable

How to Access Journal Articles when Readings Online is Unavailable

Please note this will only apply where Readings Online links to an ebook or a journal article that is available electronically via the Library’s databases.  If Readings Online links to a pdf of a print book chapter or journal article, access to the pdf will not be available and the pdf will need to be downloaded before LMS shutdown period.

If you have any questions about this or need assistance please contact us at readings-online@unimelb.edu.au

Image credit – Detour by Nicolas Nova  88x31


Lest We Forget

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Today is Remembrance Day.  The date is significant as at 11am on 11 November 1918, there was a cease fire to allow the Germans and the Allied Troops to negotiate a peace settlement which brought an end to World War I after four years of fighting and millions of deaths.  Since 1919, we have observed Remembrance Day to honour the sacrifices made by the soldiers who fought in that conflict.

So what does Remembrance Day have to do with copyright?  Well, hearing about the memorial service being held at the Australian War Memorial today, made me think about all of the documents and material that the AWM holds related to World War I.  There is considerable interest in this material, not just from academic researchers, but also from authors and historians and ordinary members of the general public, who are interested in what it would have been like for their grandparents or great grandparents.  As such the AWM is keen to make as much of their collection available to as many people as possible, including via the internet for people who are not able to get to the AWM in person.  Much of this material, such as correspondence and diaries, is still protected by copyright, even though it is very old.  In many cases, these letters and diaries are unpublished which means that copyright lasts indefinitely.  Even where the author has been dead for more than 70 years because of the way copyright works, unpublished material is still protected.  This can make it difficult for the AWM to preserve and digitise material, as they need to get permission from either the author (if they are still alive), or their family (if the author is deceased).  Getting permission is not easy, as it not always possible to identify or locate the author/copyright owner.  As a result, material that could be made available online and therefore readily accessible to researchers and the wider community, is not able to be shared.

The University of Melbourne Archives holds many collections of historical material relating to World War One. These collections include original items from Australian soldiers, nurses and doctors at the various fronts, as well as business, union and personal papers revealing the situation on the home front. For example, material samples of Australian Army uniforms in a textile business collection; the Bendigo anti-conscription campaign committee minutes; correspondence from Vera Scantlebury Brown as a young female assistant-surgeon in England; and souvenirs including poppies picked on the Western Front in 1916 and still intact as part of the Ray Jones collection. We have also hosted exhibitions and events using these collections, including a recent event for the Friends of the Baillieu Library – “The Lost Soldiers of Fromelles

The issue of copyright in unpublished works is not just a problem for the AWM and the University of Melbourne. Almost all libraries, museums and archives  have collections of unpublished material that they would like to make available online but cannot due to copyright.  If unpublished material was subject to the same duration of copyright as published material, many of these collections would be out of copyright and could be made freely available to anyone who wanted to view them.  The length of duration of copyright in unpublished material is further complicated by the fact that it can be difficult to identify or locate the copyright owner – making the material ‘orphaned’.

So what can we do about this?  In it’s review of intellectual property, the Productivity Commission recommended removing perpetual copyright protection for unpublished works, bringing unpublished into line with published works.  If this change was implemented, copyright in some unpublished works would expiry and these works would move into the public domain.  This would mean that libraries, museums and archives would be able to make more of their collections of unpublished materials available digitally.  Making content available digitally means it’s easier for people to find and often breathes new life into the work.  It helps to keep our shared history, culture and memories alive.

The Productivity Commission’s final report has been submitted to the Government and will be tabled in Parliament.  So far, the Government has not yet responded to the recommendations but changing the duration of copyright in unpublished works is one that we hope they accept. Making access to the letters and diaries of WWI diggers easier will help us to remember their sacrifices and keep their memories alive.

Image Credit – 03-Poppy-Roll-of-Honour by Bernard Oh  CC BY-ND


Copyright Ebooks Now Available

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The full range of copyright guides from the Australian Copyright Council are now available as eBooks.  Staff and students can access the full text of the guides via the Library catalogue.  26 titles – listed below – covering a wide range of topics are available.

Architecture, building design & copyright

Commercialising copyright

Copyright & online technologies

Copyright & publishers

Copyright essentials

Copyright for businesses

Copyright for music teachers: educational institutions & private tuition

Copyright in training materials: a practical guide

Educational institutions: using sound & screen

Educational institutions: using text & images

Film & copyright: making content for big and little screens     

Galleries, museums & copyright

Government and copyright

Graphic designers & copyright: a practical guide

Historians & copyright: a practical guide

Interactive games & copyright

Libraries & copyright

Moral rights: a practical guide.

Music & copyright

New technologies for education: a practical guide

People with a print disability: access to copyright material

Permissions & copyright clearances

Photographers & copyright

Special case exception: education, libraries, collections: a practical guide.

Websites & social media

Writers & copyright 

These books, along with the information available on our website, are great resources for anyone wanting to find out more about copyright.

Image: Ebook by Esther Vargas by-sa-icon


Open Access Week: October 24th – 30th 2016

Open Access Week is a global event. Now in its ninth year, it is an opportunity for academic and research communities to learn about the benefits of Open Access, share what they have learned, and inspire wider participation.

Open Access (OA) means free public access to scholarly works, as well as the ability to use and reuse the work under Creative Commons licenses. OA benefits academia, education, industry and the wider community, both in Australasia and globally (AOASG, CC BY 3.0). It also part of Australian Research Council (ARC) policy. Any publications arising from an ARC supported research Project must be deposited into an open access institutional repository.

Open Access Week was established primarily by Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC). This year’s theme Open in Action hopes to encourage stakeholders to take active steps in opening up research and scholarship and encouraging others to do the same in making their work more openly available.

The importance of OA to academic and research communities is demonstrated in a diverse array of activities being hosted by local and international institutions in support of Open Access Week. The Conversation is also participating, and currently hosting 80 articles that explore issues around OA.

Events for Open Access Week 2016

Local events include an address being hosted by Victoria University (Monday 24th October 2.00 – 4.00pm). The Manager of Australian National University (ANU) Press, Lorena Kanellopoulosis, will give an address on ANU ePress and discuss: governance costs of OA publishing; peer-review process; benefits to the institution; discipline areas covered, and major challenges.

The Australian Open Access Strategy Group (AOASG) has information and links to events being hosted in Sydney, Perth, Brisbane and Adelaide. These include:

  • AOASG & QUT: Monday 24th October 11:30am-1.00pm
    * Free Webinar ‘The ins and outs of academic-led OA journal publishing’ – requires online registration

Further Information: http://www.openaccessweek.org/


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