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EU Orphan Works Database unveiled

Copyright users can now consult a database of orphan works across the EU

The database is hosted by the EU Observatory on Infringements of IP Rights at OHIM. It contains information on collections held in libraries, museums, educational establishments and public-service broadcasting organisations.

The information is forwarded to OHIM by the relevant national authority in each EU member state.

It includes: printed works, cinematographic or audiovisual works and phonograms, certain unpublished works, works embedded or incorporated in other works, and partial orphan works.

The database also allows rights holders to search for orphan works and if necessary end their orphan status.

The database can be searched online.

The EU Directive on orphan works was agreed in 2012 and member states have until tomorrow (October 30) to transpose it into national law. It covers works first published in the EU where the copyright is protected but the rights owners cannot be located and applies to printed works, cinematographic and audio-visual works, phonograms and works embedded or incorporated in other works (such as pictures in a book).

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