New laws for author's rights: adequate for digital preservation?

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Univ Sheffield Dept Information Studies


Introduction. Besides technical and economic-organisational problems, digital preservation also faces legal issues, especially regarding copyright legislation, since all digital preservation strategies involve copying materials and/or using software which is typically copyrighted. The purpose of this paper is to ascertain the extent to which current copyright laws meet the preservation requirements of library materials..Methodology. A cross-sectional analysis of recently updated national copyright laws as well as the impact of the other two protection methods: contractual and technological.Results. Even after the latest updates current copyright legislation is almost useless for digital preservation activities since the opportunities provided by WIPO Copyright Treaty to adapt and extend copyright exceptions and limitations have been used to the full.Conclusion. We need a legislation reform that will make it possible to carry out all required copying and communication activities and software use, even if circumventing technological protection is needed. But that is not enough for licensed works. The best solution for this kind of work is to include specific clauses in the licences that facilitate preservation activities. Thus, cooperation between both parties, libraries and rights' holders, is essential.



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Information Research-an International Electronic Journal. Sheffield: Univ Sheffield Dept Information Studies, v. 12, n. 4, 16 p., 2007.