Fiesler and Bruckman (2019)

From Copyright EVIDENCE

Advertising Architectural Publishing of books, periodicals and other publishing Programming and broadcasting Computer programming Computer consultancy Creative, arts and entertainment Cultural education

Film and motion pictures Sound recording and music publishing Photographic activities PR and communication Software publishing (including video games) Specialised design Television programmes Translation and interpretation

1. Relationship between protection (subject matter/term/scope) and supply/economic development/growth/welfare 2. Relationship between creative process and protection - what motivates creators (e.g. attribution; control; remuneration; time allocation)? 3. Harmony of interest assumption between authors and publishers (creators and producers/investors) 4. Effects of protection on industry structure (e.g. oligopolies; competition; economics of superstars; business models; technology adoption) 5. Understanding consumption/use (e.g. determinants of unlawful behaviour; user-generated content; social media)

A. Nature and Scope of exclusive rights (hyperlinking/browsing; reproduction right) B. Exceptions (distinguish innovation and public policy purposes; open-ended/closed list; commercial/non-commercial distinction) C. Mass digitisation/orphan works (non-use; extended collective licensing) D. Licensing and Business models (collecting societies; meta data; exchanges/hubs; windowing; crossborder availability) E. Fair remuneration (levies; copyright contracts) F. Enforcement (quantifying infringement; criminal sanctions; intermediary liability; graduated response; litigation and court data; commercial/non-commercial distinction; education and awareness)

Source Details

Fiesler and Bruckman (2019)
Title: Creativity, Copyright, and Close-Knit Communities: A Case Study of Social Norm Formation and Enforcement
Author(s): Fiesler, C., Bruckman, A.
Year: 2019
Citation: Fiesler, C. and Bruckman, A. (2019) Creativity, Copyright, and Close-Knit Communities: A Case Study of Social Norm Formation and Enforcement. Proc. ACM Hum.-Comput. Interact., 3,
Link(s): Open Access
Key Related Studies:
Discipline:
Linked by:
About the Data
Data Description: 15 participants were recruited from Tumblr and LiveJournal, who were thereafter interviewed to determine the social norms or unwritten rules of their respective online community. Data were then qualitatively coded and organised thematically.
Data Type: Primary data
Secondary Data Sources:
Data Collection Methods:
Data Analysis Methods:
Industry(ies):
Country(ies):
Cross Country Study?: Yes
Comparative Study?: No
Literature review?: No
Government or policy study?: No
Time Period(s) of Collection:
Funder(s):
  • NSF Award #121634

Abstract

“Social norms as a regulatory mechanism often carry more weight than formal law–particularly in contexts when legal rules are gray. In online creative communities that focus on remix, community members must navigate copyright complexities regarding how they are permitted to re-use existing content. This paper focuses on one such community–transformative fandom–where strong social norms regulate behavior beyond copyright law. We conducted interviews with fan creators about their "unwritten rules" surrounding copying and remix and identified highly consistent social norms that have been remarkably effective in policing this community. In examining how these norms have formed over time, and how they are enforced, we conclude that the effectiveness of norms in encouraging cooperative behavior is due in part to a strong sense of social identity within the community. Furthermore, our findings suggest the benefits of creating formal rules within a community that support existing norms, rather than imposing rules from external sources.”

Main Results of the Study

The study finds three consistent norms in fandom communities:

Attribution - this is strongly entrenched in fandom communities, despite lacking any legal basis in the US (the dominant perspective from online communities).

Commerciality - fandoms carry a belief that non-commercial uses will always be fair use. However, there are some inexplicable differences between e.g. fan art (which is fine to commercialise) and fan fiction (which is not fine to commercialise).

Secrecy - the fandom tries to not draw attention to the community for fear of legal action (though may also be related to social stigma).

The study finds that norms can emerge organically within the community and are usually adopted by newcomers through observation (such as the widespread use of disclaimers). Occasionally, these rules are formalised in e.g. FAQs, which may be in tension with terms of service. Norms also tend to be adopted more quickly and strongly where there is a stronger social identity and bonding within the community. The community may in turn enforce these rules by sanctions such as e.g. public shaming or ostracisation.

Policy Implications as Stated By Author

The study does not make any explicit policy suggestions.



Coverage of Study

Coverage of Fundamental Issues
Issue Included within Study
Relationship between protection (subject matter/term/scope) and supply/economic development/growth/welfare
Relationship between creative process and protection - what motivates creators (e.g. attribution; control; remuneration; time allocation)?
Harmony of interest assumption between authors and publishers (creators and producers/investors)
Effects of protection on industry structure (e.g. oligopolies; competition; economics of superstars; business models; technology adoption)
Understanding consumption/use (e.g. determinants of unlawful behaviour; user-generated content; social media)
Green-tick.png
Coverage of Evidence Based Policies
Issue Included within Study
Nature and Scope of exclusive rights (hyperlinking/browsing; reproduction right)
Exceptions (distinguish innovation and public policy purposes; open-ended/closed list; commercial/non-commercial distinction)
Green-tick.png
Mass digitisation/orphan works (non-use; extended collective licensing)
Licensing and Business models (collecting societies; meta data; exchanges/hubs; windowing; crossborder availability)
Fair remuneration (levies; copyright contracts)
Enforcement (quantifying infringement; criminal sanctions; intermediary liability; graduated response; litigation and court data; commercial/non-commercial distinction; education and awareness)

Datasets

Sample size: 15
Level of aggregation: Fans
Period of material under study: