[Talk-GB] UK war office maps of Africa digitised

Lester Caine lester at lsces.co.uk
Sun Jan 31 11:39:58 UTC 2016


On 30/01/16 18:03, Jez Nicholson wrote:
> Andy, I respectfully beg to differ. Crown copyright does expire after 50
> years but owners of scans claim 'sweat of the brow' grants them
> copyright of the images made. Even the people at NPE Maps claim it
> http://www.npemap.org.uk/tileLicence.html but they renounce any claim on
> derived data.
> 
> I don't necessarily agree that simply scanning something is fair grounds
> for copyright ownership. Professional quality scans and georectifying
> does cost money though.

Neither do the courts ... Although I could not find the link I was
looking for. The courts have basically rejected the idea that simply
scanning a document restores it's copyright. There has to be
'substantial new material' and then only that new material - such as
perhaps providing translations of names - can be copyright?

Paying to use the facilities to access scanned documents is not
unreasonable, it is only the claim to 'ownership via copyright' which is
not enforceable by law?

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/request_justification_of_claims
makes interesting reading, but the arguments do seem floored ... and
some key links no longer work. That the resulting archive has a database
of OCR translations which is their IP sort of overrides the the
complaint, although the quality is sometimes rather suspect and does
need better quality checking. If one is having to pay a substantial sum
to access data then it's quality should match. It is questionable though
if material that should be freely available via the British Library
should now be the base for a third party chargeable service?

The National Library of Scotland does seem to be doing a much better job
for the UK than the British Library is? With much more open access while
almost inevitably having to charge for things that the British Library
should perhaps be providing?

-- 
Lester Caine - G8HFL
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