Thursday, August 20, 2009

Copyright code of practice revised

The Alliance for the Protection of Copyright (APC), of which the Writers' Guild is a member, has published a newly updated Code of Practice (pdf) to protect those involved in both the submission and receipt of proposals for film, television and radio.

The revised Code aims to encourage the free flow of ideas and ensure that written proposals (including formats, treatments, scripts, outlines, development documents, tender submissions, storylines, artwork and synopses) are treated in a fair and transparent manner.

It also outlines dispute procedures for those who feel their copyright may have been infringed. The latest edition has been updated to include online and interactive content.

The APC Code of Practice was first launched in April 1999 and has become recognised by all parties as a way of establishing best industry practice.

The updated 2009 Code aims to protect and give confidence to those submitting proposals, provide practical guidelines and sets out the obligations of those both submitting and receiving them.

The current members of the APC (BECTU, Directors UK, Musicians’ Union, The Society of Authors, National Union of Journalists, Women in Film and Television and Writers’ Guild of Great Britain) with the support of the BBC, ITV, C4, Five, AETN UK (History, Bio and Crime & Investigation Network, Military History), the Radio Independents Group, S4C and Pact are seeking to encourage the use of the Code throughout the industry. It is anticipated that more digital broadcasters will join in supporting the Code in the future.

In a joint statement Directors UK and WGGB said: “Creative ideas are the lifeblood of our Members’ work. In a competitive marketplace the APC Code offers protection to the vital raw material on which our industry depends: new ideas. We encourage our Members and all creatives and commissioners to study and follow the guidelines in the new Code”

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