Tag Archives: moral rights

Moral Rights PART II

The purpose of the previous post was not to say ‘Oh well, missed out this time around, I’ve learned my lesson, next time I’ll make sure I talk to my client about moral rights, it won’t happen again’.

While I was composing the post I was also in contact with my client and Alice Blackwood, the writer of the article.

To Alice it began with a tweet reply to a photo she had posted of the space:

@aliceblackwood bit slow on the pick up but unhappy not to be credited for my design work here 😦

A bit lame in retrospect, but I was treading cautiously and nervously – unsure how best to approach her, unsure about whether I was over-reacting or not.

However once it was put out there my concerns were almost immediately addressed by Alice.

We ended the day of back and forth messages and emails with a phone call discussing issues of attribution and how this is particular rife in the more fickle retail design sector, how we could explore the topic in more detail in a further article, online vs print publication and when we could meet for a coffee to talk about all of this and my work as well.

Oh and with regard to the article, it was an oversight that can easily be amended.

It’s funny, I have spoken with many architect friends about this. They often have their own story to tell, how they were pissed off but didn’t do anything about it.  Or they retell the story of someone they know and how they can’t believe it happened.  Or they just complain about us being ‘too polite’ not ‘fierce’ enough as individuals and as a profession.

It could also be that not being credited makes us feel like we have failed, and no one wants to talk about that, right?

Moral of the story of Moral Rights:
Question the omission – it is more than likely an oversight or error.  The beauty of on-line content is that it can be easily fixed.
And remember to have that conversation with your client!

Share your story and/or follow up on that incident that’s been eating away at you and let me know how you go.

Will Work For Shoes PART V – Moral rights

I didn’t know about this article from last year until a friend came across it and sent me the link.

http://www.habitusliving.com/desire/wilfredandenric

Sure I can publish this project on my blog and website (if I had one), tweet about it, instagram photos until the cows come home but how great it is to actually be published by someone else!?  I just wish I was mentioned in it…

So over the past fortnight I have agonised over how to write about this in a productive and fair way.  It is not about blaming anyone or seeking pity for poor ole me not getting my name in lights.  It is a question of Moral Rights, our relationships with our clients and our ability to empower our clients to not only contribute and collaborate during the design process but take ownership of their design without losing our own connection to it.  This last part is critical to my practice, but clearly I am yet to work out how to achieve this balance.

For any readers unfamiliar with Moral Rights, as part of the Copyright Act  Moral Rights protect the rights of artists (including architects), our reputation and the integrity of our work.  Key to this is our right to be attributed as the designer of a project when it is constructed, publicised or represented in print. (Definition courtesy of Acumen)

The Australian Institute of Architects Client and Architect Agreement has a clause for Moral Rights:

The architect must be attributed in any Public Information about the project promulgated by, or on behalf of, the client or architect, whether the project is complete or not.

If you do not use the standard Client Architect Agreement or DIA Design Agreement make sure your own version includes a clause on this.  More importantly (as we all know most clients will never read the contract) ensure to have a conversation with your client with regard to Moral Rights,  attribution and how mutually beneficial this is – actually maybe have a couple of conversations with them about it.

For an excellent article on Moral rights and architects