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Extended Collective Licensing - the view of a national library

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Presentation given by Ben White of the British Library at the Europeana Connect Extended Collective Licensing workshop in Luxembourg

Presentation given by Ben White of the British Library at the Europeana Connect Extended Collective Licensing workshop in Luxembourg


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  • 1. Extended Collective Licensing –the view of a national library.Benjamin White, Head of Intellectual PropertyBritish Library
  • 2. The British Library Collection• 150 millions items 35km of music shelving (357 years to listen 9-5. 3 minutes of new music collected every minute.)• 12km added a year from legal deposit.
  • 3. British Library Mass Digitisation Collections• 4 million pages of 17th – 19th Century Newspapers• 25 million pages of “out-of-copyright” books 1800 – 1900 2000 days of Sound Recordings• 85,000 books from the 19th century
  • 4. What is Mass Digitisation?• Minimal or ideally no “weeding” – top left hand corner to bottom right.• Intellectual creation by curators of a thematically aligned collection.• A whole historical collection or a part of a historical collection.
  • 5. Text: 24 pt● Bullet● Bullet● Bullet
  • 6. Unique and rare material
  • 7. Why digitise?Not “because it’s there” but• Increasingly digital targets for cultural bodies;• Educational, research and cultural benefits for ! citizens;• Stimulate further artistic creativity in turn;• Promote business and technology innovations.
  • 8. ! “Europe can become a leader in the distribution of digital content, and as part of this change, our digital heritage is an important component.”! Orange’s Vision – The Migration of Digital Content to Open Markets.! Comité des Sages Hearing October 2010.
  • 9. 19th Century Study of In-Copyright Material excluded from Digitisation• Total Number of titles excluded from digitisation as in- copyright = 865• Number of titles theoretically available for purchase = 173• Number of titles available in print on demand format = 140• Number in stock = 1
  • 10. Public Domain pre 1923 in America.
  • 11. Copyright, Designs and Patents Act1988 §2(1) The owner of the copyright in a work of any description has the exclusive right to do the acts (specified in Chapter II), as the acts restricted by the copyright in a work of that description.
  • 12. Mass DigitisationStrong correlation between commerciallyvaluable works and ability to efficiently clearrights.Research libraries interested in rare, unique,less common material including unpublishedmaterial.Inevitably this means that rights clearanceissues are manifold.
  • 13. Orphan Works - evidence• Broadcast / unpublished sound recordings high? > 90%• Film – 21% of film in European film archives orphan. (60% of these are over 60 years old.)• ARROW – 2011 study of 140 titles from 1870 – 2010. 31% are Orphan Works.
  • 14. Rights Clearance• BBC estimate 12 hours to clear one hour’s worth of film.• ARROW study shows that simultaneous rights clearance of 140 titles on average took 4 hours per book.• To clear rights for the 500,000 estimated 20th century out of commerce works at the BNF it would take one person over 1200 years to clear (with no weekends).
  • 15. Rights Clearance Framework and its effect on Digitisation• Stick to public domain and contribute to the “blackhole of the 20th Century”.• Only cover commercial material with active rightsholders – could already be digitised so value questionable unless curated, arranged and presented differently.• Spend a lot of time looking for rightsholders and then just take the legal and reputational risk with what you cannot clear.
  • 16. How do you clear rights en masse in the context of mass digitisation? Extended Collective Licensing but
  • 17. Issues• How does it work across borders?• Are collecting societies open, transparent and independently regulated?• Is it acceptable to multi-national publishers?• Is it acceptable to incumbent commercially active creators and authors?• Does it negate all new limitations and exceptions – the “comfort blanket” or “sovepute” effect – and where does that leave the public interest?• What happens to the money collected for the unrepresented?• Does it create more problems for memory institutions – orphan works?
  • 18. Orphan Works Governmental Licence or an Exception?• Much unique material not produced with commercial intent in mind – JISC In from the Cold.• Is a diligent search more appropriate for certain collections?• Ethical problems with commercialising through collecting societies – exacerbates problems with re-emerging owners.
  • 19. What is the solution? No one size fits all.
  • 20. What are the options for Out ofCommerce Works and Orphan Works?Orphan Works● “Pure” Exception – US and UK● Governmental Licence – Canada, Japan, Hungary, UK (?)● Licensing Based Solution (Extended) – ScandinaviaOut-of-Commerce Works● Streamlined licensing solution. e.g. ECL
  • 21. www.bl.uk/ipben.white@bl.uk