The workshop brings together archivists, scholars, lawmakers, lawyers, business people and musicians. Participants will focus on the tensions between increasing the accessibility of collections and respecting copyright laws, on questions of digital restitution or repatriation, as well as the ethical, legal and technical framework for making African music.
Since the last two decades, archives collecting African music – both on the continent and in the Global North find themselves increasingly confronted with a growing interest in historical recordings of popular music. Researchers, musicians and representatives of the music industry have come to appreciate these recordings as scholarly subjects, as artistic inspiration, or as untapped commercial resources. With more and more collections being digitized, access to the material could easily be granted globally and the interests of the above-mentioned groups could be met. Especially, African academics and artists could access the music easily from their respective countries, and thus, a digital repatriation of the music would be possible. However, given that currently most popular music recordings fall under copyright legislation, archives face a situation where they may want to grant access but are prevented to do so by law.
The public part of the workshop will include a keynote lecture on 21 September by Prof. Dr. Martin Kretschmer (University of Glasgow) on “Copyright and Non-use”.