The Copyright Act gives writers, composers, artists and other authors the right to decide how their works may be used. This right arises at the same time as the work is created and applies until 70 years after the death of the author. Certain use of copyrighted works may be made without permission from the copyright holder, for example, for teaching, library activities or private use.

What does copyright imply?

Copyright grants two types of rights: economic right and moral right. The economic right gives the author the exclusive right to, for example, publish the work and spread it by selling it.

The moral right means, among other things, that the author must be named when the work is published, and it protects the work from being altered or made available to the public in such a way that could be damaging to the author’s literary or artistic reputation or distinctive character.

For how long is a work protected?

The protection period for a work is for 70 years after the year of the death of the author. This means that if the author died in March 2000, all of that person’s production (irrespective of year of publication) is protected until after the end of 2071. Anonymous works are protected for 70 years after they have been made available to the public. After the protection period has ended, the work can be freely used. 

What am I allowed to copy?

Normally, you are only allowed to copy limited parts of a work. The Copyright Act states the conditions that apply, and the University negotiates agreements with Bonus Copyright Access regarding the copying of teaching materials. You have ultimate responsibility for adhering to the conditions and staying informed about the agreements that apply.

Copying copyrighted materials for private use

It is permitted to make a few copies of published works for private use. You are therefore allowed to make one or a few copies of an article or other short texts. For books of a normal size, for example, a textbook, you are only allowed to copy limited parts of the book. Making a copy for your own studies and research is counted as private use.

The legislator has not specified in more detail how “limited parts” is to be interpreted. In the Bill (2004/05:110 p. 383 f), the following guidance is provided:

“A limited part always means that it must be a small part of the work (= the book) and not as much as half or almost half of the work. Of course, it is not possible to evade the rule by copying a limited part of a work one day and then copying another part another day.”

You can read more about the conditions that apply to copying in the Act (1960:729) on Copyright in Literary and Artistic Works under Section 12.

Copying for teaching and studies

There is a special agreement for the copying of materials at universities and university colleges. This means that teachers and students are allowed to copy works digitally and analogously and use the material for teaching.

Detailed information about, for instance, who is allowed to make copies, how much can be copied, and what can be copied is available on Bonus Copyright Access’ homepage.

Using digital information resources

The university library provides numerous journals, books and other information resources in digital form. The publishers that have published the material own the copyright and the library’s agreements with the publisher/supplier governs how the publications may be used. In most cases, a user at a university can print out and download the material, but there are restrictions on certain platforms. Students and researcher/employees at Uppsala University can also access the digital resources when off campus. Other users can access them by visiting the library in person.

Do you want to publish works from the Library’s collections?

Uppsala University Library does not possess the rights of the works in its collections, nor does it assert copyright of copies made by the library.

You must always check what conditions apply for the material you want to publish. If the copyright still subsists, you need permission to publish from the author or the author’s descendants. The author’s name must always be stated in conjunction with publication.

Copyright when publishing in DiVA 

DiVA is the university’s platform for digital publication and the registration of publications. If you as a researcher want to make your publications openly accessible in DiVA, you must retain your copyright and not transfer it to the publisher, or alternatively, you must have the publisher’s approval regarding parallel publication in an open archive.

Do you want to know more or do you have questions about copyright?

You will find more information about copyright on the following websites and contact details of copyright organisations that can answer any questions you may have.

Bildupphovsrätt i Sverige
Bildleverantörernas förening
Swedish Association of Professional Photographers

Bonus Copyright Access (about copying/copying agreements)
Alis (use of texts, irrespective of medium)
Sveriges Författarförbund
Svenska Journalistförbundet
Sveriges Läromedelsförfattares Förbund
The Swedish Publishers’ Association (SvF)

Last modified: 2022-07-21