A Resource Guide to Terminology and Copyright (US-EU)
Since I am no expert in legal issues and the recommendation ALWAYS is that you seek the advice of a lawyer, I will not try to reinvent the wheel today. Rather than giving definitions I want to share very useful resources that I will be including under the Section Terminology 101 for future reference.
I want to point to two very important resources for the EU that, in addition, refer specifically to terminology databases.
- “Studies on Translation and Multilingualism: Translation and Intellectual Property Rights”. (See 7 below) is a recent (free) publication by the European Commission. Chapter 7 is divided into Section 1 “The protection of translation tools by database rights” that includes a description of (i) international protection of compilations of databases and (ii) the protection of databases in the European Union; Section 2 “Copyright protection of databases in the European Union” that includes a description of the (i) conditions of protection, (ii) ownership, (iii) exclusive rights, and (iv) exceptions; Section 3 “Sui Generis protection of databases in the European Union” that includes a description of the (i) conditions giving rise to the Sui Generis rights, (ii) the rights of the database maker, (iii) the rights and obligations of the “lawful users”, and (iv) the exceptions to the Sui Generis right; and, lastly, Section 4 “Ownership issues relating to translation databases” which describes the protection provided to the source document, the translation, the original database, the database whether original or not, and the subsequent translations.
- An overview on copyright questions with regard to terminology (see 3 below) is a section that forms part of the “Collection of Pan-European Terminology Resources through Co-operation of Terminology Institutions”, published by EuroTermBank in 2006. Although not as updated as the previous one, it is a 50-page document full of very useful information on all the basics on terminology copyright including annexes on model agreements, a glossary and a Code of Good Practice for Copyright in Terminology.
The two sources above will give you all the basics on copyright related to terminology, and for the US (although more focused on database than terminology) two easy to understand sites that I’ve found are source 1 below “A brief into copyright” which gives you the basics and links to lots of details, and source 2 “Database protection in the US” a website by Ius Mentis, which also explains briefly how it differs from EU legislation.
Readings on copyright:
- Guide to Terminology Agreements, by Christian Galinski and Jürgen W. Goebel (TermNet 1996).
- A brief intro to copyright, a blog post by Brad Templeton (on US copyright).
- Database protection in the US. Ius Mentis webpage.
- Overview on copyright questions with regard to terminology in “Collection of Pan-European Terminology Resources through Co-operation of Terminology Institutions”, EuroTermBank, 2006.
- Ten big myths about copyright explained, a blog post by Brad Templeton (on US copyright).
- Terminology and Copyright, by Sue Ellen Wright, Kent State University (a PowerPoint Presentation).
- Terminology and copyright, by Gerhard Budin, University of Vienna, 2006 (A PowerPoint presentation).
- Translation and intellectual property rights. Final report (1-2014). (ebook) Corporate authors: European Commission, Directorate-General for Translation. Private authors: Jean-Christophe Troussel, Julien Debussche
- Understanding Copyright and Related Rights, a publication by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO).