Last week a new database for "orphan works" was launched by the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM).
Orphan works are all those works such as books, films, newspaper articles and other creative material that are protected by copyright, but whose owner cannot be found.
The lack of information on the author has often been an obstacle to the digitisation and dissemination of these works. To solve this problem, the EU Directive on Orphan Works set out common rules for the digitisation and online display of orphan works. Under the Directive, such works which have been identified as orphan after a diligent search on their authorship may be used by public institutions.
All orphan works must be included in an EU-wide database, which OHIM now makes accessible on its website: the Orphan Works Database.
For further information, please click here.