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Under Canada’s Copyright Act, creators of original visual artworks (paintings, sculptures, engravings, screen prints, drawings, crafts, photography, illustrations, etc.) usually have the exclusive right to authorize or prohibit certain ways in which their works may be used, even if they are no longer in physical possession thereof.

SODRAC: a one-stop solution for rights clearance

Would you like to copy or exhibit a work in our repertoire? Please remember that you are required to obtain SODRAC’s authorization before using any such works. Since our members have assigned their copyright and exhibition rights to SODRAC, they cannot directly authorize use of their works or issue licences.

As the cornerstone of collective rights management, assigning rights greatly facilitates rights clearance for users, who benefit from a one-stop solution.

The following are examples of how works created by SODRAC members may be used:

Some ways in which visual artworks may be used include:

  • Reproduction in any material form, including in media such as books, catalogues, posters, postcards, CD liners, clothing, jewellery, etc., as well as in audiovisual productions (TV shows, films, videos, documentaries, etc.) or digital productions (multimedia productions, websites, etc.).
  • Communication to the public via telecommunications technology (TV broadcasting, Internet).
  • In certain cases, public exhibition for purposes other than for rent or sale.

Period of copyright protection

In Canada, such rights are usually granted for a period equal to the lifetime of the creator, plus 50 years. In the U.S. and the European Union countries, basic protection is granted for 70 years. After that time, artworks enter the public domain and may be used without prior authorization.

Outside Canada, you are bound by the laws of each country in which you use that work, even if the author is Canadian. Therefore, if the publication is distributed abroad, you must apply the 70-year term of protection.

  
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