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Open Access and copyright, licences

A license is that you, as the owner of a work, database, or other copyrighted material, may permit others to use it. In accordance with the provisions of the Copyright Act on citation rights, direct citations and references to a work are permitted in the appropriate context and in accordance with the academic citation conventions of the individual disciplines, as well as the original author and source are mentioned. However, the license allows you to grant more extensive access rights to open access materials or, if necessary, impose special conditions to restrict re-use or editing.

Copyrighted works

Works protected by copyright include (from the Copyright Act list):

  • written works in the fields of fiction, non-fiction, politics, education, etc.;

  • scientific works or works of popular science, either written or three-dimensional (monographs, articles, reports on scientific research, plans, schemes, models, tests, etc.);

  • computer programs that shall be protected as literary works. Protection applies to the expression in any form of a computer program;

  • speeches, lectures, addresses, sermons and other works which consist of words and which are expressed orally (oral works);

  • photographic works and works expressed by a process analogous to photography, slides and slide films;

  • cartographic works (topographic, geographic, geological, etc. maps, atlases, models);

  • draft legislation;

  • standards and draft standards;

  • opinions, reviews, expert opinions, etc.;

  • derivative works, i.e. translations, adaptations of original works, modifications (arrangements) and other alterations of works;

  • collections of works and information (including databases). For the purposes of this Act, “database” means a collection of independent works, data or other economics arranged in a systematic or methodical way and individually accessible by electronic or other means. The definition of database does not cover computer programs used in the making or operation thereof. In accordance with this Act, databases which, by reason of the selection or arrangement of their contents, constitute the author’s own intellectual creation shall be protected as such by copyright and no other criteria are applied.

Copyright Act does not apply:

  • ideas, images, notions, theories, processes, systems, methods, concepts, principles, discoveries, inventions, and other results of intellectual activities which are described, explained or expressed in any other manner in a work;

  • legislation and administrative documents (acts, decrees, regulations, statutes, instructions, directives) and official translations thereof;

  • court decisions and official translations thereof;

  • badges, etc.);

  • news of the day;

  • facts and data;

  • ideas and principles which underlie any element of a computer program, including those which underlie its user interfaces.

    The most commonly used open access licensing system is Creative Commons. The CC license includes a worldwide, irrevocable right to redistribute and edit the material. By imposing additional conditions, authors can restrict these rights at their discretion. The license can be made more permissive later, but it is usually not possible to make it more stringent.

What are the Creative Commons license options?

There are six different license types:

CC BY: This license allows reusers to distribute, remix, adapt, and build upon the material in any medium or format, so long as attribution is given to the creator. The license allows for commercial use.

CC BY includes the following elements:
BY  – Credit must be given to the creator

CC BY-SA: This license allows reusers to distribute, remix, adapt, and build upon the material in any medium or format, so long as attribution is given to the creator. The license allows for commercial use. If you remix, adapt, or build upon the material, you must license the modified material under identical terms.

CC BY-SA includes the following elements:
BY  – Credit must be given to the creator
SA  – Adaptations must be shared under the same terms

CC BY-NC: This license allows reusers to distribute, remix, adapt, and build upon the material in any medium or format for noncommercial purposes only, and only so long as attribution is given to the creator. 

It includes the following elements:
BY  – Credit must be given to the creator
NC  – Only noncommercial uses of the work are permitted

CC BY-NC-SA: This license allows reusers to distribute, remix, adapt, and build upon the material in any medium or format for noncommercial purposes only, and only so long as attribution is given to the creator. If you remix, adapt, or build upon the material, you must license the modified material under identical terms. 

CC BY-NC-SA includes the following elements:
BY  – Credit must be given to the creator
NC  – Only noncommercial uses of the work are permitted
SA  – Adaptations must be shared under the same terms

CC BY-ND: This license allows reusers to copy and distribute the material in any medium or format in unadapted form only, and only so long as attribution is given to the creator. The license allows for commercial use. 

CC BY-ND includes the following elements:
BY  – Credit must be given to the creator
ND  – No derivatives or adaptations of the work are permitted

CC BY-NC-ND: This license allows reusers to copy and distribute the material in any medium or format in unadapted form only, for noncommercial purposes only, and only so long as attribution is given to the creator. 

CC BY-NC-ND includes the following elements:
BY  – Credit must be given to the creator
NC  – Only noncommercial uses of the work are permitted
ND  – No derivatives or adaptations of the work are permitted
 

The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication 

CC0 (aka CC Zero) is a public dedication tool, which allows creators to give up their copyright and put their works into the worldwide public domain. CC0 allows reusers to distribute, remix, adapt, and build upon the material in any medium or format, with no conditions.
 

Personal and proprietary rights of the author

The personal rights of the author are inseparable from the person of the author and are not transferable. Personal rights include the author's right to authorship, author's name, protection of honor and dignity; the right to the inviolability of the work, appendices, disclosure, supplementation; the right to withdraw the work; the right to demand the removal of one's author's name from the work used. The authorship of the work, the name of the author and the honor and dignity of the author are protected indefinitely.

The author's property rights include the author's exclusive right to use his work in any way, to allow and prohibit similar use of his work by other persons and to receive income from the use of his work.

The author has the right to allow and prohibit the making of copies of the work or part of the work, distribution of the work, translation of the work, adaptations and adaptations of the work, making the work available to the public by any presentation, exhibition or technical means.

§ 32 of the Copyright Act provides that the Copyright in works created in execution of duties of employment:

 (1) The author of a work created under an employment contract or in the public service in the execution of his or her direct duties shall enjoy copyright in the work but the economic rights of the author to use the work for the purpose and to the extent prescribed by the duties shall be transferred to the employer unless otherwise prescribed by contract.

 (2) An author may use the work created in the execution of his or her direct duties independently for the purpose prescribed by the duties only with the prior consent of the employer whereupon mention must be made of the name of the employer. In such case, the author is entitled to receive remuneration for the use of the work.

 (3) An author may use the work created in the execution of his or her duties independently for a purpose not prescribed by the duties unless otherwise prescribed by the employment contract. If a work is used in such manner, mention must be made of the name of the employer.

 (4) In the cases prescribed by legislation, the author of a work created in the execution of duties shall be paid, in addition to his or her pay (wages), remuneration for the use of the work. Payment of remuneration may also be prescribed in an agreement between the employer and the author.

 (5) The author of a computer program or the author of a database who creates the program or database in the execution of his or her duties or following the instructions given by his or her employer shall enjoy a copyright in the program or database but the employer has the exclusive licence to exercise all economic rights unless otherwise provided by contract.

 (6) Economic rights in a work created in the public service shall transfer to the state unless otherwise prescribed by contract. The rights shall be exercised by the state authority which assigned, commissioned or supervised the creation of the work.

[RT I 1999, 97, 859 – entry into force 06.01.2000]
 

What does it mean in practice to choose a CC BY license?

CC license defines the terms of use for open materials.  With CC BY license the author doesn’t give up all his or her rights, but clearly states on what terms the further use of the work is permitted. The original author still holds the copyright. By choosing a CC BY –license you give permission to share and adapt your work freely, e.g. users are allowed to translate your text and that translation can be shared publicly. 

You must always be mentioned as the original author and all the changes to the original work have to be indicated clearly. There also has to be a link or a reference to the original work and license text. The whole work doesn’t have to be shared with the same license, e.g. you can give a different license for text and images. This has to be indicated clearly together with the work.
 

Can I publish images with a CC BY license?

CC BY license allows the images to be freely modified and shared, e.g. the images can be cropped. If you want your image to be shared as it is and not to be modified in any way, choose CC BY-ND -license. 

Citing images is permitted (Copyright Act 22§) if it isn’t expressly prohibited.  The use of the image has to have a clear link with the subject matter. 

In the following guides it is extensively explained how CC licenses and copyright are to be observed when publishing or reusing images.
 

Do I have to ask for permission if I publish text or images created by others?

Respecting (other people’s) copyright 

In joint works such as teaching materials or joint publications produced together at several organisations it is beneficial to obtain the permission for open publishing from all the copyright holders already at the start of the project.  

When adding material (images, text, videos etc.) created by others into your own work you have to ensure not to violate the rights of the author of the material.  When it comes to material not shared with an open license, the right to use the material has to be obtained from the copyright holder with a permission that can be documented. 

Good research practice must to be followed in all of the university studies. The appropriate and discipline specific reference practice is learned during the university studies. Any kind of cheating or plagiarism is forbidden.
 

How do I license my teaching materials if it contains images and audiovisual material?

Use CC BY Attribution 4.0 (CC BY) or CC BY-SA Attribution ShareAlike (CC BY-SA).  Both licenses require that the original author and the resource are cited.  All the changes that have been made to the work also have to be indicated.  

Users of the material are free to use your material and create their own material based on yours.  The material can be updated even after you yourself no longer update the material. 

Creative Commons NoDerivatives license (CC BY-ND) is not recommended to be used with open educational resources because it prevents every kind of updating and modifying of the material. 
 

How do I mark my work with a CC license?

You can mark the license in many different ways.  In most network services the license can be chosen directly from the publishing platform at the same time as you publish the material. If you need the CC license logo or an embedded code, those can be found at the Creative Commons web page.

You can find different ways to cite CC licenced material at the Creative Commons - wiki.

 

What is the suitable license for software or data?

For open software MIT- and GNU-GPL-licenses have been developed among others. When sharing and using open material, it is important that if the material contains identifiable persons or if the data is sensitive, the data has to be anonymised before sharing. In some cases, it cannot be shared at all. Further information in the Research data management guide.

The further use of data, such as data mining is made easier if it is shared with a license that is as open as possible. For sharing research data and metadata the CC0 license where you give up copyright is the preferred license, but the original source should be cited whenever possible. Before you share or reuse data you should find out the rights related to data sharing. The previous versions of Creative Commons licenses (before version 4.0) are not recommended for sharing research data.

Source: Helsiki University Library: Copyright and licences

Anonymisation of data

Sharing data that contains personal information is often problematic from a legal point of view, especially with the introduction of the GDPR in May 2018. The best way of dealing with the legal problems is to de-personalise the data. This transforms the data from ‘personal data’ by replacing or removing information that may identify an individual.

The following methods help in de-personalising/anonymising a dataset

  • Removal of direct identifiers. This can include, but is not restricted to, identifiers such as names, dates, geographic information, telephone numbers, email addresses, etc

  • Reduction in precision. For instance this could be applied to remove day and month from dates of birth, which are highly identifying, and leave year of birth which is more effective at preserving anonymity. Post code information could be reduced to Post code district (e.g. L69) or for even less precision only the post code area (e.g. L) could be retained.

  • Aggregation. Rather than include the raw data itself, it may be more advisable to group the data instead. Instead of including age, a band of ages could be introduced – 16-25, 26-35, 36-45 etc. Care should be taken at the upper and lower ranges of certain variables to ensure anonymity is preserved, so taking the age example there may be very few people in a dataset over the age of 90 and the band may have to be modified to take this into account.

  • Textual data should be thoroughly searched for identifying information such as the direct identifiers listed above. When found these identifiers should be replaced with a consistent pseudonym. Where search and replace techniques are used, you should exercise care to ensure wrongly spelled identifiers are not missed from the procedure. In many cases given the time and effort required to check textual data it may be worth considering how much data is really necessary and how much can be discarded before sharing takes place.

Anonymisation of data is not an exact science and throughout the process you should be aware of the potential for re-identification. If you consider there may be a high risk of your research subjects being re-identified (for instance by combining the data with other easily obtainable datasets), it may be appropriate to control distribution by using data sharing agreements.

Pseudonymisation is the coding of personal data in such a way that it is not possible to personalise them without knowing the code, but this possibility exists for the data controller and therefore the requirements of the EU General Data Protection Regulation must be taken into account when processing pseudonymised personal data.

 

Source: University of Liverpool

 

Copyright

Intellectual property is a creation of the human intellect and protected by law. The Government of the Republic of Estonia has passed most of the international IP (Intellectual property) treaties. 

Intellectual property includes copyright and its accompanying rights, inventions, industrial design, trademarks, geographical indications, trade secrets, plant breeders’ rights, domain names, appellations, integrated circuit layout design, and unfair competition. 

Copyright is a type of intellectual property that grants the authors of literature, art, music, and scientific work the right to forbid others to use their creative work without permission.  In general, other people can only use a creative work with the author’s permission. 

Copyright is applied to an author’s original creative work that is tangible, expressed in an objective form or manner, and can be reproduced either directly or via some technical means. No official registration or other procedures are required for the work to become eligible for copyright. Copyright applies to both unpublished and published (for the general public) works. For other types of IP, official registration of the creative work is required to become eligible for protection by law. 

Copyright only protects the form of the creation; it does not cover ideas and the actual content of the work. Therefore, copyright protects the manner in which the creation is expressed, not what is expressed. Originality and creativity during the process of creation are important criteria to qualify for copyright. 

After creating the work, the author has moral rights and economic rights, which constitute the content of copyright. The creator of the work or the person to whom the rights have been transferred to through either assignment or licencing has a right to use the work in any way and can allow or prevent the use of the work by third parties. These rights may only be limited in the cases specified in the Copyright Act. 

Works in which copyright subsists (list from the Copyright Act): 
- written works in the fields of fiction, non-fiction, politics, education, etc.; 
- scientific works or works of popular science, either written or three-dimensional (monographs, articles, reports on scientific research, plans, schemes, models, tests, etc.);
- computer programs that shall be protected as literary works. Protection applies to the expression in any form of a computer program;
- speeches, lectures, addresses and other oral works;
- architectural graphics (drafts, drawings, plans, projects etc.), letters of explanation and additional texts and programs explaining the contents of a project; 
- photographic works and works expressed by a process analogous to photography, slides and slide films; 
- cartographic works (topographic, geographic, geological, etc. maps, atlases, models); 
- draft legislation;
- standards and draft standards;
- opinions, reviews, expert opinions, etc.; 
- derivative works, i.e. translations, adaptations of original works, modifications (arrangements) and other alterations of works; 
- collections of works and information (including databases).

For the purposes of this Act, “database” means a collection of independent works, data or other economics arranged in a systematic or methodical way and individually accessible by electronic or other means. The definition of database does not cover computer programs used in the making or operation thereof. In accordance with this Act, databases which, by reason of the selection or arrangement of their contents, constitute the author’s own intellectual creation shall be protected as such by copyright and no other criteria are applied. The rights of database creators are listed in chapter “Rights of Makers of Databases” of the Copyright Act. 

The Copyright Act does not apply to: 
- ideas, images, notions, theories, processes, systems, methods, concepts, principles, discoveries, inventions, and other results of intellectual activities which are described, explained or expressed in any other manner in a work;
- legislation and administrative documents (acts, decrees, regulations, statutes, instructions, directives) and official translations thereof; 
- court decisions and official translations thereof; 
- news of the day; 
- facts and data; 
- ideas and principles which underlie any element of a computer program, including those which underlie its user interfaces. 

Moral rights of the creator are inseparable from the author’s person and non-transferable. Moral rights include the right of authorship and the right of author’s name; right of protection of the author’s honour and reputation; right of integrity of the work; right of additions to the work; right of disclosure of the work; right to withdraw the work; right to request that the author’s name be removed from the work which is being used. The authorship, author’s name and their honour and reputation are protected for and unspecified term. 

Economic rights of the author give the right owner exclusive rights to use the work in any way, to authorise or prohibit the use of the work in similar manner by other persons, and to receive income from such use of the author’s work.  

The author’s rights include the right to authorise or prohibit reproduction of the work or copies thereof; distribution right; right of translation of the work; right of alteration of the work; rights of exhibition and communication of the work, meaning presentation of the work either directly or by any technical device or process. 

§ 32 of the Copyright Act states that the author of a work created under an employment contract or in the public service in the execution of his or her direct duties shall enjoy copyright in the work but the economic rights of the author to use the work for the purpose and to the extent prescribed by the duties shall be transferred to the employer unless otherwise prescribed by contract. 

Use of works

Reproduction in copies for private use and reporting and citing a creative work for scientific purposes is allowed without the permission of the copyright owner. Providing a correct reference when using works by other authors is required. 

Therefore, it is necessary that the work has a copyright notice and information about the copyright owner(s), so that it is clear who to contact when there are issues regarding the use of the work. The symbol © (all rights reserved) has been used more than hundred years to indicate a work’s copyright status. Every institution, author, publication house has a right to create their own licence that states the rights of use. 

To facilitate open access mechanism, international standard licences that function within the legal copyright framework and state the conditions for using a creative work have been used (e.g. Creative Commons, Open Data Commons and other licences, the licence depends on the specific object that is being licenced). 

 

Reproduction and translation of the work for personal use 

A work may be reproduced and translated by a natural person for the purposes of personal use without the authorisation of its author and without payment of remuneration on the condition that such activities are not carried out for commercial purposes.  

Without the authorisation of the author and without payment of remuneration, it is prohibited to reproduce for the personal use the following: works of architecture and landscape architecture, works of visual art of limited edition, electronic databases, computer programs (except the cases prescribed in §§ 24 and 25 of this Act), notes in reprographic form. 

 

Free use of works for scientific, educational, informational and judical purposes 

§ 19 prescribes that the following is permitted without the authorisation of the author and without payment of remuneration if mention is made of the name of the author of the work, if it appears thereon, the name of the work and the source publication: 
- making summaries of and quotations from a work, provided that its extent does not exceed that justified by the purpose and the idea of the work as a whole is conveyed correctly; 
- use of a work for the purpose of illustration for teaching and scientific research to the extent justified by the purpose and on the condition that such use is not carried out for commercial purposes; 
- reproduction of a work for the purpose of teaching or scientific research to the extent justified by the purpose in educational and research institutions whose activities are not carried out for commercial purposes; 
- processing the object of copyright for the purpose of text- and data mining for non-commercial purposes. 

The use of copyrighted work by other persons is authorised only when the rights are transferred (assignment) or when the author has authorised it (licensing), except in the cases of free use prescribed in the Copyright Act. 

The author’s economic rights are transferable as single rights or a set of rights for a charge or free of charge. The transfer of the author’s economic rights by him or her or the grant of an authorisation to use a work may be limited with regard to certain rights and to the purpose, term, territory, extent, manner and means of using the work.  

The author may authorise, i.e. licence, other persons to use all their personal rights. The copyright owner is called licensor and the copyright user is called licencee. 

There are three types of licences: non-exclusive licence, exclusive licence, sublicence under patent. 

In case of non-exclusive licence only the person who has been granted the rights by the licensor may use the work. The author has no right to use the work. Sublicence grants the licencee a right to authorise a third person to use the work, but only with the prior consent of the author. 

Creative Commons (CC) licenses have been used for several years to simplify using the works that have already been published. CC licenses have been modified to fit Estonian jurisdiction. CC licenses are suitable to use in case of scientific publications as well as for other creative works (photographs, study material, slides, etc.). The latest version (4.0) can also be used to license databases protected by copyright. For more information, see Frequently asked questions about data and CC licenses.

CC licenses enable the author to transfer some of their rights and set terms of use to their work. CC licenses are easy to understand, and their machine-readable code makes them easy to use with different systems. 

Six main types of license, plus the public domain waiver, have been produced on four types of conditions: 
(CC BY) - attribution  
(CC BY-SA) - Attribution + ShareAalike 
(CC BY-ND) - Attribution + NoDerivatives 
(CC BY-NC) - Attribution + Noncommercial  
(CC BY-NC-SA) - Attribution + Noncommercial + ShareAlike 
(CC BY-NC-ND) - Attribution + Noncommercial + NoDerivatives 

Public domain waiver 
CC0 (CC Zero) - The author or the database rights holder gives up all rights and frees the content globally without restrictions 
Public Domain Mark labels works that are already in the public domain. These include works that are free of known copyright or whose copyright protection has ended. No-one owns the works in public domain or controls how they are used. 

License conditions can be chosen on the Creative Commons licensing page. After choosing the license, the HTML code can be implemented on the sire where the material is published. The author cannot remove the CC license from a work retroactively, but new versions or derivatives of the work can be licensed differently from the original. 

Suggestions how to refer to CC license and study material can be found on HITSA web page

Sources of Law

Copyright in Estonia are regulated by the Copyright Act. The term of copyright in Estonia is generally the life of the author and 70 years after their death. After the protection of copyright has expired, everyone can use a work for free and without the author’s permission. However, this does not remove authorship and providing a correct reference when using works by other authors is still required. 

Violation of copyright includes the violation of the author’s moral or economic rights.  

Using a copyrighted work without the right holder’s permission or contrary to the extent necessary for the free use is considered a violation of copyright (this includes reproduction, translation, modification, exhibition, making available to the public, distribution, and communication to the public). The copyright violation types are plagiarism, piracy, and peer-to-peer (P2P) file exchange. The authors may enforce their rights by criminal- or civil procedure. 

  

References: 

Autoriõiguse seadus. (2017) Riigi Teataja 

Creative Commons litsentsid 3.0 Eesti. (2010) Eesti Infotehnoloogia Sihtasutus. http://hitsa.ee/teenused/autorioigused 

Intellektuaalomandi õppematerjal. (2016) Eesti Intellektuaalomandi ja Tehnoloogiasiirde Keskus 

Kelli, A; Mets, T; Burenkov, M. (2012) Autoriõiguse ning avatud juurdepääsu (Open Access) küsimused teadus- ja arendustegevuses