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CANCOPY and Photocopying
By Alex Soiseth
The issues of copyright and the protection of intellectual property have never been more relevant. The explosion of the Internet has focused attention on the importance of understanding and protecting copyright. Photocopying is one area where confusion still exists.
Copy laws govern photocopying as well. For many years, restraints on photocopying have been lax. Photocopying magazine articles witout requesting permission from the creator has become ommonplace. But purchasing a magazine only gives the consumer the right to read, not the right to copy. If readers want to make copies they must request permission and forward payment.
Copyright and Journalists
Reproduction Rights Organizations (RROs)
Each year, RROs license hundreds of thousands of users to copy
from millions of titles published throughout the world.
In 1995-96, the 30 RRO members of the International Federation of Reproduction Rights Organizations (IFRRO) collected about $200 (US) million in copyright fees and distributed $166 million (US) to authors and publishers.
Comprehensive licences are negotiated with institutions such as schools or universities that do a lot of photocopying. A comprehensive licence provides the institution with permission to copy in advance, enabling to photocopy without requesting permission for each copying job. It is a very user friendly way to arrange permission.
Employees can copy from most works since CANCOPY also represents foreign creators and publishers through agreements with international organizations in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Norway and Australia and other members of IFRRO. An agreement with Quebec's reproduction rights organization, the Union des écrivaines et écrivains Québecois (UNeQ), ensures CANCOPY's national coverage.
CANCOPY collects royalty fees for photocopies and distributes them back to the copyright holders. The cost of the photocopies is based on the amount of copying done and which types of published works were copied.
A second type of licence is called a transactional licence. This is a one-time-only licence which provides permission to copy a specific item at a specific time. These are generally used by individuals looking for permission.
Because permission to photocopy is never meant to replace the purchase of original works, both licenses have limits to the quantities that can be copied.
Paying out the royalties
What to do if you find out someone has been copying your work without