[A2k] Copyright and libraries: 186 varieties – time for one global framework

Teresa Hackett teresa.hackett at eifl.net
Tue Apr 28 03:51:30 PDT 2015

Copyright and libraries: 186 varieties – time for one global framework. On
World IP Day 2015, how do national copyright laws shape up in the global
information place?

"Very few countries have a provision on inter-library loan. Very few
countries have protection in the remedies for liability that librarians may
face. Virtually no countries have addressed the issue of cross-border
transfer of content. There is also an uneven application of digital
technologies. And digital technologies, if they are not inevitable today
will be inevitable in every country in the near term. So it's something
that we simply need to face up to", added Prof. Crews.

*"Not licensed to fill”*

“Not licensed to fill” is a phrase encountered every day by librarians
around the world. It means that a request for a document that is not
available in the user’s home library is denied by the supply library due to
licence restrictions.

In one example, a medical student requested an article published in a
specialist medical journal that reviewed the literature of surgical
techniques and outcomes for certain preoperative procedures. While the
library subscribes to many databases, they do not have access to this
particular journal. Although the supply library, that is located in another
country, has the article, the licence does not permit it to be shared even
with a sister institution that is part of the same network. This is why the
law needs to step in.

For those with credit cards, the article can be purchased online for $35.95
or to put it in context, the equivalent of the cost of a local public
transport ticket for three months.



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