Copyright Hub Chair Introduces ‘Right Click’ Licensing

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Chair of the UK’s Copyright Hub Richard Hooper says technology needs to do more to help copyright work, at a seminar hosted by the Copyright Agency last week.

Around 85 people attended Friday’s event to find out what solution is being proposed to not only to make licensing copyright material easier, cheaper and simpler but also to create new revenue streams for creators.

In addition to a forum, the Copyright Hub is a website – – and a not-for-profit organisation that is the driving force behind the development of a new foundation platform that is seeking to transform the way digital content is referenced on the internet.

In partnership with Catapult, a technology group funded by the British government, the Copyright Hub will release a service that links people who want to re-use copyrighted material directly to licensors and creators.

By a simple right-click over any piece of digital content, the service will reveal a list of options to tell people who want to re-use that content if they are free to use it, or use it with conditions, as well as who to contact to get permission if they need to. In some instances, people will also be able to licence its use on the spot.

The solution proposes to address the need for casual one-off uses which make up the bulk of high volume, low value licensing revenue.

“Finding out who owns the rights to creative works can be very difficult,” Hooper says.

“As a result of poor data, a work cannot always be identified properly and traced back to the creator easily…the data might have been sufficient in the analogue age but it is absolutely not right for the high volume world of the digital content market today.

“We are building a ‘public good’, a project with large scale and ambitious goals which has the potential to change significantly the way the internet interacts with copyright.

“Our foundation technology platform will allow companies and organisations to create entirely new businesses, and enhance existing ones, with the aim of increasing creative industry revenues,” he said.

A beta version of the open-source technology is expected to be complete next month.

It will begin by trialling four new UK licences created by the Copyright Hub’s industry partners to cover the use of images from selected image libraries for personal web use, social media, and for low-end commercial use.

Copyright Hub is a not-for-profit, non-government organisation based in London funded by the creative industries.

Find out more about the Copyright Hub by watching the introductory video here >

About Richard Hooper

Richard Hooper CBE has devoted his career to the merging worlds of media, communications and technology. In his executive life, he was a BBC TV and radio producer (helping to found the Open University), ran a division of British Telecom (pioneer of Prestel/viewdata/videotext) and created one of the first satellite television channels. He did the independent review of the Royal Mail for the British Government which led to its successful privatisation and followed that with his review of copyright licensing and digital copyright exchanges.  He was asked by the Government and the creative industries to implement his recommendation – the Copyright Hub, of which he is now Chair.

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