Librarians Concerned Digital Content Licences Overriding Exceptions, Limitations | Intellectual Property Watch
"While exceptions and limitations for librarians and archives are under negotiation at the World Intellectual Property Organization this week, librarians and archivists called on WIPO delegates to address an issue of contract licences for digital content, which they say often override such exceptions and limitations. The 28th session of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR) is taking place from 30 June to 4 July. A side event was held on 30 June by the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) entitled, “Keeping Copyright Relevant in the digital environment: libraries, archives and licences.” It questioned the impact of digital content licence terms and conditions on the mission of libraries and archives ... Libraries are spending billions of dollars each year on licensed digital content, but amounts spent on content differ dramatically, said Ellen Broad, manager of digital projects at IFLA. There is little transparency in costs across suppliers, Vezzoso added. The core mission of libraries include: long-term preservation, archival availability, lending, collection development, digital resources availability for research, education, teaching and library sharing. These are hampered by some licence terms and conditions, said Vezzoso. She gave an example of a licence that does not permit long-term preservation, lending, archive availability, collection development and research ... Archives acquire collections to preserve them so that the present and future will benefit from lessons of the past, said William J. Maher, university archivist at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a representative of the Society of American Archivists (SAA). Archivists’ work is affected by licences, as materials collected from institutions and individuals may contain licences. As digital archives may comprise several thousand files, it is impossible to go to all content and see if there are any licences on it, as it could take years, he said. To fulfil their mission, archivists must be capturing digital content, this is especially true as the world is becoming more digital, interconnected and more international, Maher said. But archivists are facing a dilemma: should they follow the law or the best professional practice ..."