[A2k] EIFL general statement on L&Es

Stephen Wyber Stephen.Wyber at ifla.org
Wed May 30 07:24:42 PDT 2018

Dear all,

See also the IFLA statement on the same item at SCCR:

ITEM 6: IFLA Statement – General on Limitations and Exceptions
30 May 2018

I am speaking on behalf of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, with members in over 150 countries around the world. 
This meeting marks an anniversary. Ten years ago, exceptions and limitations formally became part of the agenda at SCCR, thanks to the initiative of Chile, Brazil, Nicaragua and Uruguay. 

This committee recognised that WIPO has an essential role as regards exceptions and limitations to copyright. 

At that first formal discussion in 2008, the Secretariat prepared a document calling for an action plan. 

We are very grateful to the Chair and Deputy Director General for delivering on this.

Because action is as necessary as ever. Technology and user expectations have changed. Globalisation has accelerated. And the uniqueness and importance of WIPO’s has role grown. 

It is true, as some have suggested, that Member States do have the possibility to implement exceptions and limitations for themselves. 

However, as recognised in the impact assessment published by the European Commission ahead of its draft directive on copyright in 2016, the resulting chaotic legal framework can leave users disadvantaged or confused, notably libraries, archives and museums. 

In too many cases, as highlighted in the Rostama report at our last meeting, updates to exceptions and limitations have not kept up with the creation of new rights. In this vein, we urge members not to make this mistake in discussions on broadcasting.

With the shift to digital, licensing has become the standard means of accessing many resources. Where these offer new rights, they have proved highly valuable. However, the Commission notes that they are too often unhelpfully restrictive, or simply inadequate for the task. 

Finally, the Commission underlines that due to limitations and exceptions not having cross border effect, institutions looking to promote the flow of knowledge between countries – in line with stated political priorities – face prohibitive transaction costs. 

The impact assessment therefore argues that international ‘intervention is indispensable to achieve one key objective of the copyright modernisation, which is to guarantee legal certainty in cross-border situations’. A similar view is expressed by Argentina in document SCCR/33/4. 

These are, of course, arguments you and others in this room have heard before. Thanks to extensive discussions on libraries, archives and museums, the Committee has built up an understanding of the areas where the right exceptions to copyright will make the difference. With the action plans, we have the potential finally to prove the value of WIPO’s work to our users. 

Mr Chair, progress on exceptions and limitations for libraries, archives and museums should not be controversial. 

As Vice President Ansip of the European Commission noted at this year’s Charles Clarke lecture, new exceptions for public libraries, museums and archives will not destroy publishers' business models.

What progress will mean is better legal conditions for librarians, archivists, museum creators, teachers, tutors, trainers, researchers, innovators and creators in delivering sustainable development across the board.



-----Original Message-----
From: A2k <a2k-bounces at lists.keionline.org> On Behalf Of Teresa Hackett
Sent: 30 May 2018 16:18
To: a2k at lists.keionline.org
Subject: [A2k] EIFL general statement on L&Es


36th Session: Geneva, 28 May -1 June 2018 Agenda item 6 Limitations and Exceptions for Libraries and Archives

General Limitations and Exceptions

I'm speaking on behalf of Electronic Information for Libraries that works with libraries in more than 50 developing and transition economy countries to enable access to knowledge.

We thank the Chair for preparing the Draft Action Plan. We thank all the delegates for their support for libraries and archives expressed this morning.

Mr Chairman, at the last SCCR, Prof Crews presented the updated study on limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives. Analysis of the new data and trends in the development of national copyright laws illustrate three points:

First, brand new laws are not providing for current technologies that are widely used by libraries, students, educators and citizens everywhere.

Second, there is a growing inequality in the means to legally access knowledge that will only serve to drive people towards unauthorized sources.

Third, WIPO needs to take a leadership role in setting basic international standards for use of copyrighted works by libraries not only for the sake of access to knowledge, but also for the credibility of the copyright system especially among the so-called ‘digital native’ generation.

An agreed Work Plan, building on the substantial body of work already undertaken by the Committee and in line with the mandate of the 2012 Assemblies as underlined by Member States, would help to show a commitment to such leadership.

Because what happens in this room matters. Decisions of this Committee, or lack of action, affect information services that libraries are allowed to provide, and the extent to which people in your country have legal access to the information they need for work, study and lifelong learning.

In this context, we do express our dismay at the outcome of discussions yesterday on L&Es in the Chairman’s text of the proposed broadcast treaty.
Without proper exceptions, access to broadcast content for social and educational purposes will be harder, more expensive, or even prevented. We ask member states to re-consider this issue at the next SCCR.

Prof Crews called for common sense copyright laws to ensure the future vitality of the copyright system for everyone’s benefit.

Let’s work together for our common goals.

Thank you.
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