How User-Friendly Are Museum Image Rights?

If you’ve ever considered downloading a digital image of an artwork from a museum’s website, you probably know rather well that the world of copyright is an incredibly murky and difficult one to navigate. Even if artworks are in the public domain — in the US, this means copyright has expired, 70 years after an artist’s death — many cultural institutions still claim copyright on the digital representations that they have created and share on their websites. While exceptions largely allow users to download these pictures for personal, noncommercial, or educational purposes, these online legal conditions are often still difficult to completely understand, or sometimes, even find.

Display At Your Own Risk is a primarily web-based experimental exhibition that examines the current status of digital cultural heritage and public accessibility to it through the online collections of some of the world’s most physically frequented museums.

Source: How User-Friendly Are Museum Image Rights?

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Author: Paul Sweeting

Paul Sweeting is the founder and principal of Concurrent Media Strategies, LLC and editor of RightsTech.com

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