Webcast, podcast etc.

Many educational institutions would like to offer e-learning as webcast teaching and learning. Webcast means that the teaching sessions are recorded and that the recordings are published on the Internet or an intranet.

Types of Recordings

The recordings may be audio recordings, but can also include filming. If the recordings are published in a special digital format which can be played on an IPod the correct term is »podcast«. Technically, in most cases the recordings are saved on a server so that people can download them anytime they want. However, you can also publish recordings on the Internet or an intranet at the same time as they take place, a kind of »live broadcast«. This is called »simulcast«.

Teachers must consent to the filming of the lesson or lecture, and may revoke their consent

As a teacher you are not obliged to accept that your teaching sessions are recorded and published. First, a teaching session constitutes work to which teachers have copyright under the rules and regulations of the Danish Copyright Act. Second, recordings of teaching constitute »personal information« about the teacher, which means that the recording and publication of teaching are subject to the teacher’s consent. The teacher may revoke his or her consent under section 38 of the Danish Act on Processing of Personal Data.

Read more about copyright rules in Ophavsret for begyndere – a beginner’s guide to copyright which is available in Danish only.

Read more about the rules and regulations governing the processing of personal data at www.datatilsynet.dk, the Danish Data Protection Agency.

Educational institutions can thus only record and webcast teaching sessions subject to prior agreement with the teacher, and he or she may revoke his/her consent later.

Fortunately teachers do not as a rule refuse to be recorded and webcast. On the contrary, most teachers find that webcast is an exciting educational offering. Therefore it will normally be possible for the educational institutions to get a webcasting agreement with the teachers. It is important, however, to formulate the agreements in a way which satisfies both parties and respects teachers’ right under the Danish Copyright Act and Act on Processing of Personal Data.

UBVA recommends that educational institutions and the teachers’ trade union representatives conclude collective framework agreements, which set the framework for the webcast of teaching sessions at the institution.
When such a framework agreement is concluded at an institution, we also recommend that a written agreement between the institution and the teacher be entered before each recording. See UBVA’s recommendations on model agreements here.

Teachers and institutions wishing further guidance on how to draw up agreements on webcasting, please contact UBVA for additional information.

What about the students?

The above-mentioned applies to teachers only. But legal issues may arise vis-à-vis the students. Webcasting students who are asking or answering questions may sometimes require their consent according to the Danish Copyright Act and the Danish Act on Processing of Personal Data. Therefore students should be expressly told that the lecture or lesson is webcast and how the recordings will be used. In terms of the law it is probably unclear what is required in that connection, whether it will suffice to put up a sign outside the room along with a specification of what it is the students are consenting to. Particularly in relation to the Act on Processing of Personal Data which specifically stipulates that consent must be »voluntary, specific and informed« «. To be on the safe side, it will in principle be best to get the students who say anything to sign a consent to webcasting. However, this will not always be a realistic solution in a busy work environment.

Read more about students’ legal rigths and duties

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