This seminar examines the legal rights that individuals enjoy in relation to their photographic image.  Such rights are generally afforded via two legal regimes.  First, individuals may wish to control aspects of their image to protect their privacy, e.g. via Article 8 ECHR and misuse of private information.  These laws are concerned with one’s ‘inner life’, claiming to protect dignity, emotions and/or the ‘inviolate personality’.  Alternatively, individuals may wish to commercially exploit their image as a commodity for pecuniary reward via a range of IP laws, including passing off and confidence.  These two legal bases, privacy and IP, apparently seek to protect very different and distinct interests, as well as adopting purportedly different stances on commodification of image.  But this seminar will draw upon a series of legal examples that call this binary into question and suggest that the dignitary and commercial interests in one’s image are entwined and inseparable.  This highlights privacy’s ambiguous dual role in both limiting and facilitating the commodification of one’s ‘inviolate personality’.

Each year the OIPRC hosts a number of leading academics from around the world as part of its Invited Speaker Series. These events typically run from 5:15-6:45pm on Thursday evenings at St. Peter’s College; if the venue or time is different, it will be noted on the Events calendar.  The Speaker Series consists of a presentation of about 45 minutes, followed by a Q&A session with the assembled group of academic staff, students (both undergraduate and graduate), researchers, and interested members of the public.  Discussion is informal and includes participants from several disciplines, with a wide range of prior knowledge.

Convenors: Robert BurrellDev Gangjee and Robert Pitkethly

Refreshments and snacks are served at the conclusion of the discussion.  All are welcome.

The 2019 - 2020 schedule evolves throughout the year.

Invited Speaker Series Archive listing