Skip to content Skip to navigation

OpenStax-CNX

You are here: Home » Content » Museum Licensing Fees: Practice and Rationale

Navigation

Lenses

What is a lens?

Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

Any individual member, a community, or a respected organization.

What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

This content is ...

Affiliated with (What does "Affiliated with" mean?)

This content is either by members of the organizations listed or about topics related to the organizations listed. Click each link to see a list of all content affiliated with the organization.
  • Rice Digital Scholarship display tagshide tags

    This module is included in aLens by: Digital Scholarship at Rice UniversityAs a part of collection: "Art Museum Images in Scholarly Publishing"

    Click the "Rice Digital Scholarship" link to see all content affiliated with them.

    Click the tag icon tag icon to display tags associated with this content.

Recently Viewed

This feature requires Javascript to be enabled.

Tags

(What is a tag?)

These tags come from the endorsement, affiliation, and other lenses that include this content.
 

Museum Licensing Fees: Practice and Rationale

Module by: Nancy Allen. E-mail the authorEdited By: Frederick Moody, Ben Allen

Art Museum Images in Scholarly Publishing -- buy from     Rice University Press.

Museums hold their collections in trust for present and future generations, a fiduciary responsibility that helps shape their mission and inform their policies and practices. One such practice involves the licensing of images of objects in the collection. Museums have traditionally maintained that licensing helps ensure accurate and appropriate reproduction of works in their collection. They regularly charge external clients an asset fee, the cost of the physical photograph or digital image; and a licensing fee, the cost associated with permission to license the photograph or digital image for a particular use. The permission fee is based on a claim to the intellectual property rights associated with the photograph or image of the work of art.

Photographic Asset Fee

In the pre-digital days, there was a tangible expense associated with copying a color transparency or printing a black-and-white negative. Analog films and black-and-white prints were rented to the client, and, if they were returned at all, scratches frequently marred their delicate surfaces. Thus, the rationale for charging clients an asset fee was direct cost recovery for film that was more often than not damaged beyond reuse.

Some museums also seek to be reimbursed for picture research necessary to identify the object(s) that would fill the order, and for handling and shipping the film. Today, however, external clients are frequently able to identify the specific image required by searching a museum’s online collections database, thereby obviating the need for picture research by the rights and licensing staff. The high-resolution digital file can easily be copied, thereby eliminating the time and money for printing black-and-white negatives or sending color transparency masters out for duplication. Depending on the number and size of the images, the order can be instantly “delivered” as an email attachment or by posting the digital files to an FTP server. As more existing transparencies are scanned and new photography created by direct digital capture, many of the actual costs of supplying images have thus been eliminated, leaving staff salaries to form the major expenditure in rights and licensing services.1

License Fee

The permission fees charged by museums to license images for a particular use are generally based on an implicit or explicit claim of copyright over the photographic reproduction, regardless of whether the underlying work is in the public domain or copyrighted by the artist or artist’s estate, and regardless of any claim of originality in the photographic work.2

Footnotes

  1. Simon Tanner, “Reproduction charging models & rights policy for digital images in American art museums. A Mellon Foundation study,” King’s Digital Consultancy Services, King’s College London, 2004), http://www.kdcs.kcl.ac.uk/pubs/USMuseum_SimonTanner.pdf (accessed October 12, 2008).
  2. Sometimes, museums have also relied on limited access to works in their collections, and contracts regarding how that access will be provided, as the basis for fees.

Content actions

Download module as:

Add module to:

My Favorites (?)

'My Favorites' is a special kind of lens which you can use to bookmark modules and collections. 'My Favorites' can only be seen by you, and collections saved in 'My Favorites' can remember the last module you were on. You need an account to use 'My Favorites'.

| A lens I own (?)

Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

Any individual member, a community, or a respected organization.

What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

| External bookmarks