Copyright User is an independent online resource aimed at making UK Copyright Law accessible to creators, media professionals, entrepreneurs, students, and members of the public. The goal is to provide answers to the most pressing concerns creators have about copyright, helping them understand their rights. The site was launched on 14 February 2014.


Purpose and Scope

The textual content of the website has been produced by leading copyright academics and is intended to be accurate and authoritative. However, it does not constitute legal advice.

The content on this website reflects what is permitted under UK copyright legislation and is correct as of 25 May 2023. Every attempt will be made to update the content at regular intervals in order to reflect the current legislation.

It is important to be aware of the evolving nature of the law. Several changes to the UK Copyright Act were implemented in 2014 and are included in the content of the site. Furthermore, even though copyright law is territorial, for several years the European Union has been carrying out a harmonisation process of the laws of the Member States on copyright and related rights, at both legislative and judicial level. For example, some fundamental concepts – such as the meaning of ‘originality’ – have moved over to the language of the Court of Justice of the European Union. These fundamental concepts still apply in UK law after the UK’s exit from the EU.

For accessible and authoritative guidance on EU Copyright Law, visit CopyrightUser.EU.

It is also essential to note that the material represents the law as stated in the UK Copyright Act, although at times there can be considerable tension between law and practice.


Awards and Recognitions

The Adventure of the Girl with the Light Blue Hair the first episode in The Game is On! series – won the 2015 AHRC Award for Innovation in Film.

“A well-constructed, quality animation addressing issues of creativity, IP and copyright for schools and undergraduates” said judges; “lively, engaging, witty (a la Sherlock Holmes mode), informative and educating at the same time.”

The short film was also nominated for the 2016 Learning on Screen Awards.

Going for a Song – an animated video exploring the copyright aspects of music creation and distribution – was shortlisted for the 2017 AHRC Award for Innovation in Film.

The animated series The Game is On! has been selected for the UK Web Fest 2019 in the category ‘Best UK Web Series’ (ceremony postponed due to the pandemic).

In 2016, the European Commission commissioned the Council of Europe’s European Audiovisual Observatory to carry out an independent study to identify the most significant media literacy projects carried out since 2010 – was in the top 5 for the UK.


What our Users say

“As a daily copyright practitioner, I’m always referring to  Not only does it help clarify things in my own head, but also it’s a straightforward, no-nonsense resource to refer others to.  It’s for the expert and non-expert alike.  In my view, it’s as helpful for copyright holders as well as copyright users.  I love its simplicity, its themed areas, its authority (being written by world experts), and its respectful tone.  I can’t recommend Copyright User highly enough!”
Bernard Horrocks – Intellectual Property Manager, Tate Gallery

“ is a fantastic resource for anyone who wants to find accessible information about the copyright ecosystem. is an invaluable tool for the BFI; as a resource to direct enquiries from the public; a reference point to link to for our internal copyright guidance documents as well as for our own research purposes. We have also used it for staff training sessions.  One of the highlights is The Game is On! videos and case files, an ingenious and meticulous exploration of the ways copyright and creativity operate around each other. It really brings the subject to life and has become a mainstay of our copyright toolkit.”
Annabelle Shaw FRSA – Rights Database Manager, British Film Institute

“Copyright User is an excellent resource. The team has achieved the difficult goal of providing clear information on often complex copyright matters. I share Copyright User with colleagues in the music industry and with composers and creators of music. I also reference the resource when working with students of music, law and media.”
Dr Simon Anderson – Director of Publishing, Audio Network
Publisher Director, PRS for Music

“I think the website is a fantastic idea and should be advertised/ promoted a lot more so more people can become aware of this useful resource and gain more insight or knowledge into UK copyright law, especially for content creators like myself.”
Brad – gaming YouTuber

“I found to be incredibly useful while preparing a lecture on copyright to graduate students in information science who had no previous training in this area. The materials and resources included in are demystifying and non-intimidating, while containing real rigour around the complexity of this topic. They were particularly helpful for presenting scenarios involving fair dealing to these future librarians who ought to feel empowered in this area– and which unfortunately is often riddled with chilling effects. I have confidently recommended the site as both a general resource for all my information science students, as well as a jumping off point for those interested in digging deeper into this dynamic field. Finally, it must be noted that the graphics are wonderful!”
Monica Westin – Lecturer, City, University of London, MSc Information Science


Editorial Board:

Martin Kretschmer – Chair, University of Glasgow

Maurizio Borghi – Editor, Bournemouth University
Ronan Deazley – General Editor (2012-2017), Queen’s University Belfast
Kris Erickson – Editor, University of Leeds
Marta Iljadica – Editor (from 2018), University of Glasgow
Dinusha Mendis – Editor, Bournemouth University
Ruth Towse – Editor, Bournemouth University


Content Credits:

Bartolomeo Meletti – Creative Director
Marco Bagni – Art Direction, Design and Animation
Davide Bonazzi – Illustrations
Sophie Natta, Illustrations
Ilaria Urbinati, Illustrations
Hayleigh Bosher – Copyright Researcher
Sarc:o – Music and SoundFX

Peter Bennett, Web Development and Administration
Andrew McHugh
– Web Development and Administration
Jason Filos – Web Developer
Matt Northam – Web Developer


Academic Contributors:

Megan Blakely, Lancaster University
Maurizio Borghi
, Bournemouth University
Hayleigh Bosher, Brunel University
Sheona Burrow, University of Glasgow
Ronan Deazley, Queen’s University Belfast
Laurence Diver, University of Edinburgh
Kris Erickson, University of Leeds
Benjamin Farrand, University of Strathclyde
James Griffin, University of Exeter
Aline Iramina, University of Glasgow
Stavroula Karapapa, University of Reading
Smita Kheria, University of Edinburgh
Martin Kretschmer, University of Glasgow
Daithí Mac Síthigh, Queen’s University Belfast
Bartolomeo Meletti, University of Glasgow
Dinusha Mendis, Bournemouth University
Chris Morrison, University of Kent
Claudy Op den Kamp, Bournemouth University
Pınar Oruç, University of Glasgow
Mathilde Pavis, University of Exeter
Jane Secker, City, University of London
Burkhard Schafer, University of Edinburgh
Ruth Soetendorp, Bournemouth University
Victoria Stobo, University of Liverpool
Amy Thomas, University of Glasgow
Ruth Towse, Bournemouth University
Andrea Wallace, University of Exeter


Contact aims to provide answers to the most pressing concerns creators have about copyright. Check the Creators Discuss section and find out what creators, teachers and students, and creative businesses would like to know about copyright. Visit the FAQs section and find answers to a selection of copyright questions posted by users online.

We will continue developing the site, so if you are interested in the project and you have any questions or suggestions, please let us know: