“Work for Hire Policy” for the DFMS Employee Handbook
Resolved, that the Executive Council of the Episcopal Church, meeting in Linthicum Heights, MD October 25-28, 2021, amends DFMS Employee Handbook “Works For Hire” as follows:
- Literary and Other Intellectual Property Interests
It is the policy of the Society to encourage the creation of copyrightable works and intellectual property that serves the mission of The Episcopal Church and the Society. At the same time, the Society also must protect its interests in works or intellectual property produced by its employees during the scope of their employment or at the direction or commission of the Society. This policy shall apply to copyrightable works created by Society employees (including, but not limited to, books, articles, computer software, streaming video, webinars, website content, and social media posts) (“Works”) and other intellectual property, including, but not limited to methods, processes, or systems (“IP”).
A. Ownership of Works.
- The Society shall own all Works created by its employees during the scope of the employee’s employment (i.e., that the Work was created by an employee as part of the employee’s regular duties) or was prepared by an express agreement at the Society’s commission or direction. Any such Works shall be considered “works made for hire” as defined in the Copyright Revision Act of 1976.
- Should an employee, during the employee’s employment by the Society, create a Work that is not covered by Section A(1) above, but that relates to the work and mission of the Society and that makes use of a) a significant amount of Society resources, equipment, or facilities or b) information, skills, or knowledge gained as a result of the employee’s employment with the Society, then upon request, the employee shall grant the Society a non-exclusive perpetual license to use the Work by granting the Society permission to use the Work for the benefit of the Society.
The Society shall own other IP, which includes, but is not limited, all names, logos, inventions, discoveries, developments, methods, processes, compositions, concepts and ideas (whether or not patentable, copyrightable, or constituting trade secrets) conceived, made, created, developed, or reduced to practice by any employee (whether alone or with others, whether or not during normal business hours or on or off the Society premises) during the employee’s employment by the Society that relate either to services provided or otherwise planned by the Society or to any prospective activity of the Society or that make use of any confidential information or trade secrets of the Society or any of the equipment or facilities of the Society.
Employees who create any Works in which there are or may be copyrightable or other intellectual property interests shall give advance notice of the Work to their supervisor. The supervisor shall notify the Chief Legal Officer, who shall determine whether the Work falls within the scope of the policy set out in Part A and should be considered a work made for hire. Should the Chief Legal Officer have a conflict in making such a determination, the determination shall be made by independent legal counsel. If it is determined that the Work is not a work made for hire, the employee must:
- Follow the requirements for “Outside Employment & Volunteer Activities” set forth in the DFMS Employee Handbook; and
- Include in the Work a clear disclaimer that the Work was prepared in the employee’s personal capacity and does not express the views or opinions of The Episcopal Church or the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society.
- WORKS FOR HIRE
It is Society policy that The Society shall be deemed the author and the exclusive owner of the title, ownership and copyright in all recorded data, works of authorship and products of staff work, regardless of the work location, made by a Society employee (a) within the scope of his or her employment, (b) at The Society’s direction, (c) on Society time, or (d) using any Society equipment, supplies, facility, information or other resources (including financial resources). This includes all formats and media for capturing information including, but not limited to, paper and electronic files, databases, digital images, websites, email and other forms of recorded communication.
Governance & Operations was asked to review, and if necessary, revise the current policy on Works for Hire. This proposed new language covers more fully the areas where employees of DFMS are doing work and offers more clarity on application.