• The British Literary and

    Artistic Copyright Association


    The British Literary & Artistic Copyright Association, BLACA,

    is the UK national group of the International Literary and Artistic Association (ALAI)

    founded in Paris in 1878 under the Presidency of Victor Hugo.


    It provides a forum for discussion of matters affecting the rights of authors and other copyright owners.

  • The key differences between IP Litigation in Scotland and England 

    2nd March 2023, 6.15pm

    Bristows LLP

    100 Victoria Embankment

    London EC4Y 0DH

    (In person)



    Colin Hulme (Partner, Burness Paull LLP)


    Colin leads Burness Paull’s IP team which has won the Managing IP Contentious Firm of
    the Year (Scotland) award in 2020, 2021 and 2022. The team is top
    Ranked in Chambers UK, Legal 500, World Trade Mark Review, IAM Patent 1000 and
    IP Stars. In recent year’s Burness Paull’s IP team have been involved in
    more than half of all IP actions in the Scottish IP Court.





    Orphan Works: an academic and practical review of the current law

    12th January 2023, 6.15pm

    Bristows LLP

    100 Victoria Embankment

    London EC4Y 0DH

    (In person)


    For our first session of 2023, we will be looking at the UK’s orphan works regime which governs creative works or performances for which one or more of the right holders is either unknown or cannot be found. Maria Mercedes Frabboni will summarise the academic discussions around the Orphan Works Directive and developments under UK law, and Lord Justice Colin Birss will then talk us through his personal experience of applying for and successfully obtaining an orphan works licence.


    Lord Justice Birss was appointed a Lord Justice of Appeal on 25 January 2021 and Deputy Head of Civil Justice from 11 January 2021. He took silk in 2008, was appointed as a Specialist Circuit Judge of what we now know as IPEC in 2010, was appointed to the High Court in 2013, and has been a Deputy Chair of the Copyright Tribunal.



    Dr Maria Mercedes Frabboni, Lecturer in Law, University of Sussex, has conducted research on regulation of non-attributable or abandoned visual art and published on issues surrounding the use of orphan works. She has also commented on reforms affecting the management of copyright by collecting societies in the music and art sectors, and is the Honorary Treasurer of BLACA.



    Simon Clark, Honorary Secretary, BLACA  

    The proposed new UK text & data mining exception

    8 December 2022, 6.15pm

    Bristows LLP

    100 Victoria Embankment

    London EC4Y 0DH

    (In person)


    The UK IPO recently signalled its intention to introduce an expansive new text & data mining exception for both copyright and database right to facilitate TDM for any purpose. This discussion will address the context for this exception, its substance and the extent to which it may or may not be compatible with the Three Step Test.



    Toby Headdon, Senior Associate, Bristows LLP



    Alison Firth, BLACA Chairman

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  • Membership

    The annual subscription is £50. This covers attendance at all the regular meetings and entitles members to a substantial discount on the fee for joint BLACA seminars. BLACA members are automatically members of ALAI with entitlement to discounted fees to attend its international Congresses and Study Days each year and to receive free copies of the proceedings (A special registration fee is available for registered students). Enquiries to Simon Clark.

  • Contact us

    Professor Alison Firth, Chairman:


    Vice Chairmen:

    Stephen Edwards

    Brigitte Lindner


    Simon Clark, Secretary:
    tel: 020 7400 8000


    Dr Maria Mercedes Frabboni, Honorary Treasurer:


  • Directions

    Seminars in presence will be held at Bristows,
    100 Victoria, Embankment, EC4Y 0DH