Dana Newman and Jenny Bent presented at the O’Reilly webinar, The Changing World of Digital Rights and Publishing Agreements. My interpretation of the content is below; best efforts were made to ensure accuracy. Follow the comments on Twitter at #TOCCON. Kat says the slides will be on slideshare and a recording will be available in about 24 hours.
Kat Meyer introduced the speakers. Dana Newman is a transactional and intellectual property attorney (@DanaNewman). Jenny Bent is a literary agent who founded the Bent Agency. She represents writers and has had 5 make the NYT Best Sellers list. (A twitter post suggested adding the publisher perspective to this session)
Dana Newman’s presented the content and Jenny inserted responses throughout.
- State of Digital Rights and Contracts: Older contracts were vague on electronic rights, Dana cited a case between Random House and the Wylie Agency. Courts said the right to exploit in book form did not include an e-book format. Review existing contracts look at grant of rights and subsidiary rights section, were digital rights provided for and if so, how? Negotiate amendments if they are not present in old contracts.
- How are electronic rights being defined in current contracts? There are many subcategories in current contracts: verbatim text converted into an ebook, is it apps, multimedia rights, or web-based content? Continue reading