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UK creative industries need to act on issues raised in the Hargreaves Review proposals
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Industry roundtable recognises the need for change to ensure UK’s creative businesses remain competitive
London 7 July 2011 - Following the release of the Hargreaves Review, Digital Opportunity, the Creative Industries Knowledge Transfer Network (CI KTN) last week brought together representatives from the creative sector to debate the implications of the Review with its author Professor Ian Hargreaves. Participants included Universal Music, Lovefilm.com and The Guardian News and Media Group along with the UK Technology Strategy Board.
John Cass, director of the CI KTN, commented: “The Review offers proposals to the UK’s creative industries which could, if implemented, have a significant long-term impact on our industry. And as the CI KTN is charged with accelerating innovation in the creative industries, we felt it was vital that we brought together some key industry figures to initiate the discussion on how to progress the Review’s proposals.”
The panel - which also included senior-level executives from D-Media, Power to the Pixel, The British Library, Inngot, Coller IP and The Work Foundation - all agreed with the Review’s findings that technology and consumer behaviour are advancing at such a pace that existing copyright laws and methods for managing digital rights for content are in danger of becoming redundant. The two issues generating most discussion were the Review’s proposals for a Digital Copyright Exchange, and the nature of the advice and information SMEs need when dealing with Intellectual Property management.
While the panel agreed the Digital Copyright Exchange could potentially offer benefits to businesses within the creative industries, especially SMEs, Professor Hargreaves believed small firms need more guidance on the legal and commercial aspects of intellectual property to build good business models.
Gina Fegan, CEO of D-Media, who congratulated Professor Hargreaves on the Review, said: “The Digital Copyright Exchange is a no-brainer. I’m surprised that the UK has gone on for so long without one - but we trade globally so its effectiveness will be limited unless it is extended to other European Countries and beyond. The UK Government should promote the establishment of the Digital Copyright Exchange as quickly as possible and advocate its adoption on an international basis.”
While plenty of information is available, the Hargreaves Review pointed to a lack of tailored IP advice. Fegan summarised the challenge as follows: “Businesses need to understand why this stuff is so important. Given that the basic valuation of their companies depends on it, there is a surprising lack of awareness in the creative community.”
A podcast of the round table can be found at http://soundcloud.com/creativektn/ip-and-open-source-round-table. If businesses within the UK’s creative sector want to get involved in future debates and events simply sign up and become a CI KTN member free of charge by following this link http://bit.ly/qIggWe.
Notes to editors
Professor Ian Hargreaves, chair of the digital economy