In April 2016, the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) and Europeana officially introduced RightsStatements.org, a new controlled vocabulary for international, standardized, machine-operable statements about the copyright status of digital resources. This article describes the rights statements, provides guidance and examples on how to apply the most common ones, and addresses common pitfalls. It outlines how assigning rights statements fits into the digital resources workflow at Penn State, including contributing to the DPLA through PA Digital, Pennsylvania’s Service Hub. Finally, it offers suggested resources for libraries and other cultural heritage institutions to help make their own rights determinations when they lack the expertise of a copyright officer.
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