News / 18.01.2016

UJF opposes Viestilehdet’s copyright deal

The UJF has said that it does not recommend that staff assistants working for Viestilehdet’s publications, especially the rural news broadsheet Maaseudun Tulevaisuus, sign a copyright agreement to surrender all rights to written and photographic material they produce, including modification and transfer rights.

The agreement is also a problem, the union says, for freelancers and people interviewed and photographed for articles. The agreement would allow for written and graphic material to be used for other publications and be altered without the knowledge of the author of the work.

UJF lawyer Jussi Salokangas, who deals with freelance issues, says that the practical upshot of such a move is that assistant editorial staff are often reluctant to tell interviewees that there is no control over transfer rights on interviews or photos for fear of putting subjects off from agreeing to be interviewed or photographed.  “If problems to do with the surrender of transfer rights become public knowledge, it could become harder to get the desired copy.”

The UJF has tried to intervene in the situation to negotiate the terms of the copyright agreement, but Viestilehdet has rejected the proposal.

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