Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Copyright news

Copyright Licensing NZ makes sure that authors and publishers are paid for the use of their work in schools, universities, training institutions, corporate libraries, copy shops and more. CLNZ is a very good thing: I was on the board for six years, from 2009 to 2014, so know exactly how good it is and how dedicated the staff are.

Thing is, most NZ copyright material used in the licensed organisations is educational, which is why educational authors get the vast bulk of  payments. (One author of maths textbooks, his publisher told me, earns over a million a year in royalties and gets each year from CLNZ a cheque for a small but gratifying single-digit multiple of 10 to the power of 5: I so wish I had finished my maths degree.)

Fiction and poetry authors, not so much: I got a cheque for $15 a few years ago. This is why, to the annoyance of fiction and poetry authors, the CLNZ grants/awards are skewed toward educational authors: it’s them what pays the bills. But I digress.

CLNZ is about to start a quarterly newsletter for authors and publishers, Copy.Write, with information about its funding programmes as well as topical copyright-related issues. We can all keep up with this ourselves by going to the IFRRO and IAF websites – but we don’t, do we? I don’t. So this looks like a very useful initiative.

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