Talk explores the complex issues of authors’ rights and intellectual property Feb. 24

The Wallace Center hosts annual 21st Century Scholarship Unlocked series with Peter Hirtl

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Noted archivist and copyright expert Peter Hirtle will discuss the intellectual property rights of authors at The Wallace Center’s 21st Century Scholarship Unlocked series held Feb. 24.

A discussion Feb. 24 at Rochester Institute of Technology will help student and professional researchers learn about their intellectual property rights as academic authors.

Peter Hirtle, an affiliate fellow of the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University, will present “Copyright and Authors’ Rights in the 21st Century,” from 1 to 2 p.m. in the Golisano Hall auditorium. The event is free and open to the public.

Hirtle’s talk is part of the annual 21st Century Scholarship Unlocked series, sponsored by The Wallace Center at RIT. The series focuses on issues related to academic publishing.

The Feb. 24 conversation revolves around the complex issues of authors’ rights and intellectual property.

Many academic publishers require transference of some—or even all—of an author’s rights to a work, explains Nicholas Paulus, digital initiatives specialist in The Wallace Center. This can affect authors' ability to distribute their work to students and colleagues, incorporate it into future works and post it on their website or in an online repository.

“We hope to provide a better foundation of knowledge on authors’ rights for the campus community, especially for those who are seeking to publish and those who advise and assist authors,” said Paulus. “Understanding the rights authors are automatically granted and the rights publishers ask for is integral for managing intellectual property.”

Hirtle has had extensive experience with intellectual property, specifically as it relates to libraries and academic publishing. Previously, he served as senior policy advisor to the Cornell University Library, with a special mandate to address intellectual property issues. In addition to his roles at Harvard and Cornell, he was the associate editor of D-Lib Magazine, is a member of the Copyright Office’s Section 108 Study Group, and is a contributing author to the blog,

A reception will follow Hirtle’s presentation from 2 to 2:45 p.m. in the Golisano Hall atrium. To register for the event, go to The Wallace Center event website.