17 December 2009

New report: Untold Stories in South Africa

Cover image of SAHA Audiovisual Audit Report 2009A report entitled 'Untold Stories in South Africa: creative consequences of rights clearance culture for documentary filmmakers' summarizes the findings of a project conducted by Black Filmmakers Network & Documentary Filmmakers' Association, South Africa and the Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property (PIJIP) & Center for Social Media, American University on the perceptions of South African documentary filmmakers about copyright clearance requirements and the effect of such requirements on their work.

This work was performed in the context of a larger project exploring how lessons learned from "best practices" projects with documentary filmmakers in the U.S. can help their counterparts in other countries identify and overcome barriers to effective filmmaking posed by escalating copyright clearance requirements.

Copies of this report and other materials created for this project can be downloaded from the project website.

An important theme to emerge through this research was the difficulty faced by South African filmmakers in identifying and accessing archival footage and the need for alternative archival access. While a greater understanding of users’ rights in terms of South Africa's copyright legislation goes some way towards addressing they face accessing archival footage, filmmakers need more information on where and what archival footage is available. In order to address this need, SAHA in conjunction with the Visual History Archive at the University of Cape Town has conducted an archival audit report cataloguing over 30 historical footage archives and hundreds of documentary films that provide public access to historical footage on the liberation struggle in South Africa.

.Copies of SAHA's Audiovisual Audit Report can be downloaded from this website.