Copyright Literacy in the UK

Understanding Library and Information Professionals’ Experiences of Copyright

Authored by: Jane Secker , Chris Morrison

The Routledge Companion to Media Education, Copyright, and Fair Use

Print publication date:  February  2018
Online publication date:  February  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138638891
eBook ISBN: 9781315637549
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter reports on research to investigate the “copyright literacy” of librarians in the UK. Based on a survey and focus groups, undertaken following reform of copyright legislation in the UK in 2014, it originated from a European study. The research highlights gaps in knowledge, identifies training requirements in the sector, and suggests library and information science (LIS) qualifications and continuing professional development (CPD) need to address a greater range of topics related to copyright and intellectual property rights. The data also suggests that copyright is a source of anxiety for many librarians. Following the survey, a follow-up qualitative study was undertaken, using phenomenography as a way of exploring in detail librarians’ varying experiences of copyright. The chapter concludes by discussing how copyright might form a key component of the wider digital and information literacies taught by librarians. It also discusses how games based learning might be a valuable approach to copyright education.

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