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34th SCCR: Observer Statements on Limitations and Exceptions for Libraries and Archives

Posted by Anubha Sinha at May 30, 2017 05:40 AM |
Observers made the following statements on the agenda of limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives on 3rd May 2017.

International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA):
Thank you, Mr. Chair. We congratulate you as leaders of body and looks forward to working with you to achieve the goals of the in the interests of the national copyright system. We thank the Secretariat for their hard work and IFLA is proud to have attended sessions of the SCCR for many years and gratified that Member States understand and support the role of libraries, archives and museums in promoting knowledge and the understanding of diverse cultures.

As the U.S. states and its principles document SCCR/26/8, exceptions and limitations facilitate the public service role of libraries and are executives maintaining the balance between the rights of authors and larger public interest, particularly education, research, and access to information that is essential in today's society. But that balance has eroded over time as rights holders have promoted fell ashes notion that copyright is primarily or only about protection of rights not the public good. In a world where information is increasingly borderless, as borderless as broadcast signals, the idea that issues related to access to information are local as one delegate astonishingly stated earlier this week is really incomprehensible and misguided. This is not to say, however, that local or national action is not needed as one element in the equation of access to information. In this limited sense, we agree that the exchange of national experiences in this body over the past several years has been helpful as have been the studies commissioned by WIPO from Professor Kenneth Crews which demonstrated the wide variation in exceptions and limitations existing in SCCR's Member States, including their absence in numerous countries. We applaud WIPO for commissioning these studies and urge that the Secretariat build on the studies produced by professor cruise to develop a regularly updated searchable database of exceptions and limitations for libraries, archives and museums to be accessible across borders so that legislators and citizens who do not attend these sessions can easily learn from other's experience on an ongoing basis. We further recommend that SCCR capitalize on the past sharing of Member States' national experiences and the suggested approaches in the Chair's chart of SCCR/33 by creating a draft law on exceptions and limitations for libraries, archives and museums in collaboration with all stakeholders so that there will be practical outcomes for recent discussions in this body. Such a draft law would draw on the committee's past discussions on the subject but not be binding or prejudice in any way the outcome of the committee's own work. IFLA stands ready to work with its colleagues in the archival and museum communities as well as with rights holders delegates to SCCR and the Secretariat to achieve this objective. As for our recommendations or reactions to the Chair's final chart from SCCR/33, IFLA supports this and we urge the Chair's chart be upped as a working document and certainly to the qua as an outcome of SCCR35. Finally in response to the proposal by the Delegation of Argentina, SCCR/33/4, we hope that the committee will request the Secretariat to prepare a study on issues related to limitations and exceptions for libraries, archives and museums and a cross-border context including digital uses. We are grateful to the Member States that have placed and maintained limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives on the SCCR agenda and look forward to continuing these discussions. These outcomes will affect access to information and knowledge for people throughout the world. Thank you, Mr. Chair.

Society of American Archivists:
Thank you, Mr. Chair, I will try to be brief. The Society of American Archivists, North America's largest professional archival organisation looks forward to working with you and your Vice Chairs. Our members manage billions of primary source works from across the global. SAA believes in the importance of WIPO's work because copyright is central to the mission of archivists. Archivists collect and preserve all types of creative works for one reason only, use. Most archived works, however, have never been in commerce, but people globally need them to maintain their culture, identity, protect Human Rights and support innovation through new creative works. If such works cannot be made available digitally, however, and across borders, they might as well not exist. Archivists and librarians are conscientious about copyright, but sometimes strict adherence to the law conflicts with our collections and our mission. For example, a 1970's collection of over 120 interviews of legendary jazz musicians are available for on site study in the archives of the U.S. research library, but, their general usefulness has been hobbled by unbalanced copyright law because the original copyright assignment mentioned neither derivative works nor the yet to be invented Internet. As a result, risk averse librarians and lawyers were unwilling to allow zing tall accessibility of the interviews. Although jazz cannot thrive without taking risks, an archivist's obligation to the future requires that we minimize risk. That's why we need reasonable exceptions to deal with the streams ambiguity inherent in our collections. Copyright is already perceived to be under attack. Can WIPO afford to torn away allies such as archivists? We have a very positive public approval rating from the very people that you need to reach. To keep archivists on board the development of exceptions for archives must remain on SCCR's agenda. To this end the committee's work should continue based on the previous Chair's chart and that chart should become a working document for the committee. Thank you.

Centre for Internet and Society:
Thank you, Mr. Chair.  CIS works on issues of access to knowledge and other digital rights in India. I would like to share with you my experience which highlights the difficulty of building digital archives in India. Mr. Chair, earlier last year the government of India embarked upon the important project of digitizing the cultural audiovisual material stored in government and private collections  to store material for preservation purposes, and set up a virtual network of these repositories to offer online access. My organization has been assisting them in this crucial public service mission.  These works are oral traditions, dance, music, theatrical practices, cultural practices – all of which lie largely inaccessible and languishing in several small and large collections in India. Since, the Indian copyright Act does not contain an exception for the purposes of preservation by an archive; the entire project has suffered high costs in terms of money and time. Money, because the project had to get expensive legal assistance to set up processes to obtain rights clearance from all the performers who were a part of the works and copyright holders- some of which are orphan works, thereby compounding the problem. Further, partnering organizations also expressed legitimate fears of supplying their works, in case of a potential copyright and related rights violation that could implicate them with civil/criminal liability.

In such a scenario, for the benefit of other states to update their standards corresponding to this international legal instrument as well, it would indeed be useful to adopt the proposals mentioned in the document SCCR/26/3 that address these issues, and others. Thank you.

International Council of Archives:
Thank you very much, Mr. Chair. And the ICA congratulates you on your election and that of your Vice Chairs and we look forward to working with you. Archival institutions exist throughout the world. Governments, organisations and individuals create records to provide evidence of their actions to document their rights and obligations and to preserve their heritage. Archives acquire and preserve these documents and make them available for all to use as the raw materials for cultural, academic, social and scientific research. The nature of archival material presents a particular problem. Archives hold billions of copyright works that were not created or intended for commercial purposes. Because they were never published, the rights holders for such works cannot be located. For these reasons, collective licensing is not a workable solution. The archival mission to make their holdings available for research is ham strung by a web of inconsistent copyright laws that have failed to keep up with social and technological development. In this body systemic discussion of the eleven topics, archivists provided a rich array of real life examples that clearly demonstrate the need for exceptions, for mutual recognition by Member States of exceptions and limitations to copyright that would permit archives everywhere to serve an international audience. The results of that excellent work was summarized in the Chair's informal chart on limitations, exceptions for libraries and archives. Every creator benefits from the work of his or her predecessors. Knowledge of that earlier work comes largely from libraries and archives. Many of the rights holders represented in this room could not have created their works without us. Why would creators not wholeheartedly support exceptions for archives and libraries that would only benefit their work. Regrettably, we continue to hear assertions from some groups that national solutions are suffer. It should be abundantly clear by now that national solutions are far from sufficient. We need solutions that apply in a global network environment. And in that regard, Mr. Chair, the Chair's informal chart on limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives prepared at the end of SCCR33 refined and clarified the topics to be addressed and provides a practical approach to continue to move this initiative forward. We would support our IFLA colleagues called to have it adopted as a working document of the committee, and we would also support IFLA's call for a study of cross-border issues. Thank you, Mr. Chairperson.

German Library Association:
I congratulate you on your election as a Chair and I speak on behalf of German Library Association representing 10,000 libraries in Germany. Libraries and archives face a problem. There is a high level of the international copyright protection, on the other hand, there is no such uniformity in limitations. Limitations like the ones fixed in the already mentioned Chair's informal chart, for example, for preservation, lending, document delivery, are the basis of library services. But limitations and exceptions are like a patchwork of different national legislations. For every library service crossing borders that means to act legally library staff has to know about the limitations and exceptions not only in their own country, country of origin but also in the country of destination of that service. Respective to the German library index and university libraries in 2016 around 60% of the acquisitions were electronic in technical universities the portion of electronic acquisitions is even much higher. These numbers in international comparison are even low. We can assert that research libraries are digital more than they are paper based. In the electronic world, the problem is resources usually are only available after agreement on license stipulations formulated by the rights holders mostly. That means contracts are concluded. Contracts eventually can override the limitations and exceptions. This committee might agree on in one form or the other. The objective of facilitating cross-border library teaching and research services could be achieved by introducing an international mandatory instrument on limitations and exceptions. Another track to facilitate cross-border use could be the introduction of principles of harmonizations combined with a rule of mutual recognitions like proposed in the document of the Delegation of Argentina. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

International Federation of Journalists:
The International Federation of Journalists congratulates, again, the Chair and Vice Chairs on their election and the members of the Secretariat for their diligent work. We represent about 600,000 journalists in 140 countries worldwide north and south. The International Federation of Journalists, of course, understands ts essential role of libraries and archives specifically we fully support them having the freedom to have copies for preservation. The International Federation of Journalists has repeatedly called for libraries and archives to have proper direct funding to do this themselves and not to be forced to subcontract digital archiving to commercial operations. The honorable representative of Brazil referred earlier this morning to the potential to extend the outreach of libraries and archives in unprecedents ways.. Of course, this, the making of works available on the Internet, for example, and on its successes is an important supplement to the vital role of libraries and archives in the education and training of many including journalists. But when it comes to libraries and are executives making copies of works available off the premises, that is is it not, a publishing operation? The International Federation of Journalists believes that the solution to this issue is collective licensing and necessarily capacity building to insure that efficient Democratically controlled collective licensing is available in all Member States and can deal with cross-border issues as the collective licenses that already exist already do. Many of those 600,000 journalists particularly those who focus on international reporting are poorly paid. Where there is such collective licensing it makes important contribution to their economic survival as independent professionals with their own essential contribution to make to the recording and preservation of our culture from within our cultures and not relying on foreign reporting. Thank you.

Knowledge Ecology International:
Thank you, Mr. Chairman and congratulations for your election. And for your Co-Chairs'. One thing I just wanted to mention as related to libraries is in addition to the excellent studies that have been done by Kenneth Crews and other people that have looked at library exceptions, I thought it might be interesting to have the chief economist or other people involved, but certainly the chief economist to look at the economics of the library industry. I think that we look at libraries as part of the research and development infrastructure for a country, not only as places people go to read novels, but an essential part of the competitiveness and ability for a country to have a strong high tech sector but also play an important role in the development. And it would be interesting to know what the assessment is because we hear it from other industries all of the time. They talk about the number of jobs in the film industry or the number of jobs. It would be interesting to know how many people are employed in different countries in the library sector, but also what contributions the library sector makes to the economic development of the country, and what challenges they face on pricing. The last point I wanted to make is that clearly there is a set of issues that it's really hard to reach on census on, and there is other areas where it's easier, I would think, to reach consensus on. This discussion of the archiving and the preservation of documents is a pretty good case. Certainly the making available of what's put into, what's archived and preserved in terms of documents, it's more challenging to reach consensus on that than it is to insure that people have adequate exceptions to merely do archiving and preservations. And I think that it would be unfortunate if in looking at their wide range of issues that are facing libraries, recognizing that there is a very inadequate set of exceptions in many countries according to the studies that have already been done, that people don't move forward in areas where consensus could be reached such as preservation and archiving because there are other areas that are more controversial. Thank you.

Electronic Information for Libraries:
Thank you, Chairman. I'm speaking on behalf of the Electronic Information for Libraries and I would like to thank you for giving me the floor and congratulate you upon your election to Chair this committee. I would also like to congratulate your Vice Chairs. We would like to thank the African Group, GRULAC, Asia-Pacific Group and the other delegates for having spoken of the interrelationship between the Sustainable Development Goals and the establishment of access to libraries and archives because emphasis is placed on access to information. Ladies and gentlemen, the Internet is global, but legislation on copyright stops at borders and that is why we are here today. Digital technology has changed the world, which people have access to information. Today the way we study and learn in fact means that people do not have full access. We believe that copyright is important, and that limitations and exceptions are crucial for a modern information infrastructure as well as for open access and other licensin wills. We are very pleased that other countries have modified proposals on copyright.. We are pleased that some countries have expanded their exceptions or introduced new ones. However, some countries who are updating their law are not enough to resolve a broader problem, the demand for cross-border access to information for research and culture. And the need to insure that nobody is left behind in access to knowledge means that there is say need for this aspect to be taken into account. There are specific issues which were compiled in a document and submitted to this committee and I would like to invite you to read it. There are printed copies available, but it can also be found on line. It begins with the Internet is global. We also support IFLA's and ICAS interventions and we hope that progress will be made swiftly in the SCCR in this issue. We thank you very much for your attention.

International Council of museums (ICOM):
Thank you, Mr. Chair, for this opportunity to address this important agenda item.. The international Council of museums represents important 36,000 museum professionals world wide. We are here, Mr. Chair, to give our voice to museum professionals for this important agenda item. After consultation with the international museum community and in keeping with the results of the WIPO study on exceptions and limitations on copyright for museums ICOM joined forces with our library and archive colleagues to pursue exceptions to copyright for the benefit of libraries, archives and museums as enumerated in the Chair's informal chart that provide for exceptions for all three. This pursuit is not intended to disrupt markets, but instead is targeted to instances where museums and indeed libraries and archives are unable to carry out their often shared mission. ICOM was very pleased that the Canadian delegation called for a museum study in 2013 while at the 26th session of the Standing Committee on copyright and related rights. The study on exceptions first draft was distributed and presented at the 30th session of the SCCR in 2015. The study distributed business WIPO provides a broad basis of understanding of the status of exceptions for museums within WIPO Member States and provides for the basis for ICOM's continued advocacy of exceptions for museums. The purpose of our intervention today is to signal that ICOM is committed to the belief that a harmonized approach towards libraries, archives and museums is both possible and necessary to achieve the overall objective of obtaining operational exceptions for materials and cultural heritage collections at the international level. [..] there are many instances where museums, libraries and archives cross mandates given the nature of distinctive collections. Libraries hold collections that include artifacts more traditionally aligned with museum collections or have accessioned collections that include unpublished materials often found in archives. Museums hold archival collections, have libraries within museums, and include study collections as part of their overall collections. Museums like archives nay oftentimes include a vast array of artifacts in their collections and include materials that have often been published and unpublished. At the same time, libraries, archives and museums face the same obstacles created by copyright law in trying to fulfill their respective missions being education, public interest, access to collections and communication of scholarship. This is particularly true when museums are examined not simply as stewards of art collections but as stewards of historic scientific and natural collections as well. The similarities are in fact magnified when we examine the collections we face with our 20th century collections. Museums, libraries and archives face similar challenges in preserving, exhibiting and providing access and communicating about art collections. Thank you, Mr. Chair for the opportunity to address this important issue.

European Bureau of library, information and documentation associations:
Mr. Chair, we congratulate you and the Vice Chairs on your elections to office, and thank you for inviting the European Bureau of library information and documentation associations which is the voice of libraries in Europe to take the floor. The consolidated libraries and archives studies in the SCCR30 and the museum study both from 2015 reveal that the national frontier-based approach to copyright with regard to libraries, archives and museums now in disarray, too disparate and stuck in the pre-Internet era. In the E.U. this has been the justification of proposal of mandatory cross-border exceptions to copyright. Yet in face of the ever expanding world wide web. National copyright laws are in need of constant modernization to allow institutions to function optimally in an international cross-border online environment. Now that the detailed discussion of the topic has been summarized by the previous Chair's SCCR/33 document. We offer practical suggestions for moving forward. First, we suggest that this committee establishes the principles to inclusion in the note for overarching international copyright framework for copyright exceptions and limitations affecting libraries, archives and museums. The proposals made by the US delegation in 26/8 offer useful guidance that can shape the content of the committee's work. A comprehensive and effective solution for libraries should set standard for and protect national copyright exceptions that impact on the functions of these institutions, including preservation of materials and content, copying for document delivery in any format including cross-borders. Lending of works including remotely. Protecting limitations and exceptions for override by contract terms and by holding partially inaccessible can due to legal protections of TPMs. Making orphan works available on line to the public, text and data mining of legally accessed coven tent. Acquiring work including by importation and protecting libraries, archives and museums and staff accounting for them in good faith for criminal or civil liability for unintended copyright infringement. There are various ways in which the committee can support work. And could be usefully adopted by this committee. Secondly, in line with the EU's call for guidance to Member States, we would welcome efforts from the Secretariat to further inform our discussions. In line with the Poe proposal from Argentina which correctly addresses the need for minimum set of exceptions and limitations nationally and the solution for cross-border issues this what the E.U. itself is seeking to do domestically. We would welcome a study on cross-border issue as a basis for further discussion. In order to provide further guidance to Member States, this committee could request the Secretariat to convene an expert group first and foremost of library archive and museum copyright experts as well as copyright academics, lawyers and relevant stakeholders to support the commissioning and tasking of an agreed expert to develop modern WIPO draft law for libraries, archives and museums. Finally this committee might wish to request that the Secretariat provides a useful tool to assist its work by creating online publicly accessible database of copyright exceptions and limitations. Additionally since the pace of change in copyright law affecting the library, archive and museum sector is to fast moving the committee might request an annual report from the Secretariat of changes to nationals and practices in copyright and related rights. Thank you for your attention.

Innovarte Corporacion:
Thank you very much, Chairman. We would like to congratulate you upon your election. We would like to thank the excellent  work on studies on libraries and archives. The proposal to work with the aim of a treaty on exceptions and limitations to copyright to protect the balance and legitimacy of the system for copyright and related rights with regard to libraries and people with disabilities is something we have been discussing in this committee since 2004 starting from a proposal which came from Chile. As discussions of the Marrakesh Treaty has shown that provisions on copyright to protect categories of people who are threatened or under mined by a lack of exceptions is not only possible but good and it shows a means to protect libraries, archives and possibly also museums. In this regard, we would like to request the members of the committee in good faith to consolidate all of the work done based on the text which has already been considered, the informal summary of the Chair of the committee as we have seen it's based on textual proposals either for treaty or another form of instrument which was proposed by various delegations including Brazil, India, the United States and many others. We propose that the committee would adopt this text without any prejudice to what form the work might take in the future. We believe on another point that the proposal from Argentina is particularly useful since it seeks to come up with a solution to the obstacle, namely, the lack of harmonization of rules on libraries and archives at international level. We believe it is a compliment to what has already been worked on by the committee with regard to principles and topics which are necessary for exceptions other than a national level. It should be subject to greater analysis by this committee, thank you very much.

Electronic Frontier Foundation:
Thank you Mr. Chair. The EFF work supports the work of libraries and archives which have become more relevant in the digital age and which are more challenging now. The updating of exceptions and limitations are an important way to insure that libraries and archives are equipped to meet these two challenges of fulfilling missions in the digital age. In an ideal world EFF sees norm setting as the only way to ensure that WIPO members provide a basic level of modernized limitations and exceptions for libraries, however, we recognize that members do not have the appetite for norm setting in this area at this point in time for various reasons. In that light, we do support the proposal IFLA has made for a draft law and searchable database on library limitations and exceptions. This strikes us as a workable compromise that does not commit members to hard norm setting but which would be a useful interim step towards the harmonization of limitations and exceptions for libraries worldwide. Finally and on a different topic, I would like to express EFF's hope that in the next SCCR session time will also be made available for NGOs to make statements about the broadcast treaty. Thank you very much.

Note: Source of the statement texts are WIPO's realtime transcription service.