Not every BECTU member has an interest in copyright.  For those members who are employed under a contract of service, or whose work does not attract copyright protection, copyright is not a concern.

The occupations assisted by BECTU which are mostly likely to be involved with copyright are director, producer, script and screenwriter, animation artist, visual artist, designer and photographer. 

Some set designers, model makers, researchers, and hair and make-up artists will also have an interest in copyright matters. 

What all these skilled workers have in common is that they will be freelance, or self-employed, and operating under a contract for services.  Within the union their interests are generally represented through the relevant branches of London Production Division and Regional Production Division.

Copyright Committee 

BECTU’s Copyright Committee provides the union with a channel for information on copyright policy and legislation and allows members to raise their concerns about copyright related developments within the industry. Its membership is drawn from relevant branches of BECTU such as Writers,Producers, Directors. The Committee is also attended by BECTU's Copyright Consultant, Janet Ibbotson, and BECTU's Research Officer, Andy Egan.

The Copyright Committee meets every four months to receive a report from the Copyright Consultant on current legislative developments and copyright consultations and it discusses the form of BECTU’s response.  It has a watching brief over the Union’s involvement with the copyright collecting societies e.g. DACS and represents the union on relevant industry initiatives.  It deals with any internal copyright matters e.g. development of the Script Registration Service and monitors copyright problems reported by members.

Members interested in joining the Committee are invited to contact Tony Lennon with a short note explaining their interest.

As indicated, BECTU responds to relevant copyright consultations and, where appropriate, provides copyright assistance to members via our consultant Janet Ibbotson and through the union’s lawyers Thompsons.

Copyright affiliations

BECTU is affiliated to the British Copyright Council, to the Alliance for the Protection of Copyright, and to the collection society DACS.

The Alliance for the Protection of Copyright (APC) has produced a revised code of practice (download the pdf) governing the submission of film and programme proposals. Contact us at BECTU head office to obtain the free booklet. You can also request a programme proposal pack which is a guide we produce for members submitting programme proposals.

The union also operates a Script Registration Service for its members.

What's happening in copyright?

Go to Copyright Consultations for more information about developments in copyright law and practice.