Copyright: parody, private use and quotations

Significant changes to copyright infringement rules came into force today. Individuals and organisations can now undertake additional activities without risking copyright infringement. These exceptions to infringement are permitted under EU law, but had not previously been implemented in the UK:

  • Caricature, parody or pastiche of a work
  • Quoting extracts from a work
  • Making personal copies of certain works for private use. This will include format-shifting of music (and I know a fair few people who will be surprised this was not already permitted).

These exceptions are subject to certain conditions and, in particular, the first two require ‘fair dealing’. This means that activities which are unreasonable may still constitute copyright infringement.

Other exceptions came into force earlier in the year (1 June 2014) which included non-commercial data mining and certain activities of schools, libraries and public bodies.

The Intellectual Property Office has provided updated guidance on copyright exceptions here:

Olivia Whitcroft, principal of OBEP, 1 October 2014