A recently released Recommendation enables Swedish cultural memory institutions to share their image collections online.

On October 27, Digisam and The Visual Arts Copyright Society in Sweden undersigned a recommendation on extended collective licence for images under copyright. The agreed recommendation contains the contractual terms of a cultural heritage institutions publication of it’s image database on a website the institution fully control. It also allows the institution to illustrate the database with 120 individual images under copyright per year. For publication of additional images, special compensation shall be paid. The recommendation contains a price-list indicating the cost of the mentioned uses. If the copyright-protected images, held by an institution, exceeds 25% of the total amount, separate negotiations will be conducted with The Visual Arts Copyright Society in Sweden. The undersigned recommendation also includes a contract form that can be used by individual institutions that choose to sign an image-agreement under the recommendation.

The agreement is a result of a two-year long process. Two parallel working groups were set up and started their work in the beginning of 2014. One, with representatives from the heritage institutions and with the assignment to identify the institutions’ need to use images in various types of digital forms, based on the experience from working practically with copyright-related issues.

In parallel, another working group was set up with representatives from the heritage institutions and The Visual Arts Copyright Society in Sweden with the aim to prepare the negotiations. A year ago the group delivered a set of basic conditions for an extended collective license-based image agreement, together with the collecting society in visual arts.

The basic conditions was formally approved by Digisam’s steering group which, at the same assigned a negotiating team the task of negotiating cost levels and reporting models for the individual image agreements with The Visual Arts Copyright Society in Sweden.

To support the heritage institutions in copyright issues is of high priority in Digisam’s work.

”We are therefore very pleased that we, based on the Extended Collective License-system, have reached an agreement, that we hope will lead to that the users over the coming years will benefit from a massive increase of web-published images”, says Rolf Källman at Digisam.