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  • 3.3 The Transfer of Rights
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The copyright to a photograph may be transferred by agreement. The author may transfer their economic rights fully or partially. The author of a photograph may transfer their moral rights only in part. The author of an ordinary photograph may transfer all of their moral rights.

As the extent of the copyright transfer is defined by the content of the agreement, it is always advisable to make the agreement in writing. Insofar as they have not been transferred, the rights remain with the photographer.  An agreement may be used to agree, among other things, on what use the agreement entitles, how long the duration of the agreement is, whether reproduction or adaptation is possible, whether the agreement concerns an exclusive or non-exclusive right, what the size of the compensation is, and whether the name of the author is mentioned in connection with the work. These issues are discussed in closer detail in the section Entrepreneur in the creative industries.

In accordance with the Copyright Act, the person who has a copyright to a work, or a related right to a photograph, may not adapt the work or transfer the right to use it, unless otherwise agreed. The right to adapt and transfer must always be agreed upon explicitly, otherwise the principal starting point is that the rights in question have not been transferred.

Even when a photographic work has been created in employment, the copyright is transferred to the photographer. It is however possible to agree, in an employment, collective labour agreement or other agreement, that the copyrights related to work assignments are transferred to the employer. Regarding employment relationships, however, it is noteworthy to note that the employer receives the right of use to the work or photograph taken by the employee in a work assignment, to the extent as the employer's normal activity requires.


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