Archive for the 'Copyright' Category

Publisher Self-Archiving Policies: Major SHERPA RoMEO Upgrade

Posted in Author Rights, Copyright, Publishing, Self-Archiving on October 25th, 2009

SHERPA has released a major upgrade of its RoMEO service, which lists publishers' self-archiving policies.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

A major upgrade to RoMEO has been released today, giving:

  • Extra Category for the self-archiving of the Publisher's Version/ PDF
  • Expanded Journal Coverage
  • Extra Search Options for Journal Abbreviations and Electronic ISSNs
  • New Tabular Browse View for Publishers
  • Selective Display of Publishers' Compliance with Funding Agencys' Mandates . . . .

Previous versions of RoMEO have concentrated on highlighting information on the use of the pre-print and post-print. There has been great support from the community for also providing clearly labelled information on the use of the publisher's version/PDF as a separate item. This feature has now been included and sits alongside information on self-archiving rights for Pre-prints and Authors' Post-prints. The information is available in both individual publisher entries and in the new Tabular Browse View.

RoMEO now provides expanded journal coverage, enabling users to draw from both the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) and the Entrez journal list for the Life Sciences, along with the existing resource of the British Library's Zetoc service.

In addition to searching for journals by Print ISSN, users are now able to search by Electronic ISSN. They can also search for journals using title abbreviations.

The new Tabular Browse View enables users to display comparative charts of publishers, to quickly determine and compare what different Publishers allow them to deposit, and if the Publisher has a Paid OA Option.

If you or your authors receive funding from any of the 50 plus agencies listed in JULIET, you will now be able to restrict your search results to display Publishers' compliance with any of the funding agencies' policies listed in JULIET.

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    European Commission Adopts Communication on Copyright in the Knowledge Economy

    Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars, Google and Other Search Engines, Mass Digitizaton on October 20th, 2009

    The European Commission has adopted a Communication from the Commission: Copyright in the Knowledge Economy.

    Here's an excerpt from the press release:

    The European Commission today adopted a Communication on Copyright in the Knowledge Economy aiming to tackle the important cultural and legal challenges of mass-scale digitisation and dissemination of books, in particular of European library collections. The Communication was jointly drawn up by Commissioners Charlie McCreevy and Viviane Reding. Digital libraries such as Europeana ( http//www.europeana.eu ) will provide researchers and consumers across Europe with new ways to gain access to knowledge. For this, however, the EU will need to find a solution for orphan works, whose uncertain copyright status means they often cannot be digitised. Improving the distribution and availability of works for persons with disabilities, particularly the visually impaired, is another cornerstone of the Communication.

    On adoption, Commissioners McCreevy and Reding stressed that the debate over the Google Books Settlement in the United States once again has shown that Europe could not afford to be left behind on the digital frontier.

    "We must boost Europe as a centre of creativity and innovation. The vast heritage in Europe's libraries cannot be left to languish but must be made accessible to our citizens", Commissioner McCreevy, responsible for the Internal Market, stated.

    Commissioner Reding, in charge of Information Society and Media, said: "Important digitisation efforts have already started all around the globe. Europe should seize this opportunity to take the lead, and to ensure that books digitisation takes place on the basis of European copyright law, and in full respect of Europe's cultural diversity. Europe, with its rich cultural heritage, has most to offer and most to win from books digitisation. If we act swiftly, pro-competitive European solutions on books digitisation may well be sooner operational than the solutions presently envisaged under the Google Books Settlement in the United States."

    The Communication addresses the actions that the Commission intends to launch: digital preservation and dissemination of scholarly and cultural material and of orphan works, as well as access to knowledge for persons with disabilities. The challenges identified by the Commission today stem from last year’s public consultation on a Green Paper ( IP/08/1156 ), the Commission's High Level Group on Digital Libraries and the experiences gained with Europe's Digital Library Europeana ( IP/09/1257 ).

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      Digital Videos: Presentations from Access 2009 Conference

      Posted in Copyright, Data Curation, Open Data, and Research Data Management, Digital Curation & Digital Preservation, Digital Repositories on October 13th, 2009

      Presentations from the Access 2009 Conference are now available. Digital videos and presentation slides (if available) are synched.

      Here's a quick selection:

      1. Dan Chudnov, "Repository Development at the Library of Congress"
      2. Cory Doctorow, "Copyright vs Universal Access to All Human Knowledge and Groups Without Cost: The State of Play in the Global Copyfight"
      3. Mark Jordan & Brian Owen, "COPPUL's LOCKSS Private Network / Software Lifecycles & Sustainability: a PKP and reSearcher Update"
      4. Dorthea Salo, "Representing and Managing the Data Deluge"
      5. Roy Tennant, "Inspecting the Elephant: Characterizing the Hathi Trust Collection"
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        Google Books Settlement Status Conference Reports

        Posted in Copyright, E-Books, Google and Other Search Engines, Mass Digitizaton, Publishing on October 8th, 2009

        Kenneth Crews and James Grimmelmann have posted blog reports about the Google Books Settlement status conference on October 7th. An amended agreement is anticipated to be filed by November 9th.

        Here's an excerpt from the Grimmelmann's post:

        Judge Chin is trying to move this case, and his overall attitude seemed to be that he wants as clean a record as possible, and soon, so that he can act on it. That would incline me to think that he is hoping to be able to approve the settlement, or at the least to kick some of the legal issues upstairs to the Second Circuit for its guidance.

        Read more about it at "Amended Google Deal Targeted for November 9."

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          Vernor v. Autodesk: First Sale Doctrine Covers Licensed Software

          Posted in Copyright, Licenses on October 5th, 2009

          U.S. District Court Judge Richard A. Jones has ruled that resale of licensed software from Autodesk is not a copyright violation.

          Here's an excerpt:

          The legislative history of § 109 and § 117 informs the court's decision in several respects. First, as the court noted, it suggests that "owner" not only had the same meaning when both sections were enacted, but that the meaning was that ascribed to the term in decisions like Wise. Congress did not amend the term "owner" when amending the statutes. Second, the legislative history reveals not only that Congress has modified § 117 and § 109 to specifically address computer software, but that when it does so, its modifications are not subtle. This makes it even more improbable that Congress ascribes two different meanings to "owner." Third, the legislative history shows that despite incentive and opportunity to modify the term "owner," Congress has not done so. . . .

          Autodesk's claim that Mr. Vernor promotes piracy is unconvincing. Mr. Vernor's sales of AutoCAD packages promote piracy no more so than Autodesk's sales of the same packages. Piracy depends on the number of people willing to engage in piracy, and a pirate is presumably just as happy to unlawfully duplicate software purchased directly from Autodesk as he is to copy software purchased from a reseller like Mr. Vernor. The court notes, moreover, that even if CTA had never opened its AutoCAD packages, never installed the software on its computer, and thus never raised the possibility of piracy, Autodesk would still take the position that CTA's resale of those packages was a copyright violation.

          Read more about it at "It's Still A Duck: Court Re-Affirms That First Sale Doctrine Can Apply to 'Licensed' Software."

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            The Google Books Settlement: Who Is Filing And What Are They Saying?

            Posted in Copyright, E-Books, Google and Other Search Engines, Mass Digitizaton, Publishing on September 29th, 2009

            ACRL, ALA, and ARL have released The Google Books Settlement: Who Is Filing And What Are They Saying?.

            Here's an excerpt:

            The Association of Research Libraries, the American Library Association, and the Association of College and Research Libraries have prepared this document to summarize in a few pages of charts some key information about the hundreds of filings that have been submitted to the federal district court presiding over the Google Books litigation. The Google Books Settlement is the proposed settlement of a class action lawsuit brought against Google, Inc. by groups and individuals representing authors and publishers who objected to Google’s large-scale scanning of in-copyright books to facilitate its Book Search service. The Settlement would bind not only the groups who sued Google, but also most owners of copyrights in printed books ("class-members"), unless they choose to opt out of the Settlement. Class-members who opt out retain their right to sue Google over its scanning activities, but will not be part of the collective licensing scheme created by the Settlement. Under the Settlement, participating class-members will get a one-time payment in compensation for past scanning as well as a share of Google’s future revenues from its scanning activities. A new, non-profit entity called the Book Rights Registry will represent rightsholders under the Settlement going forward.

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              Kenneth Crews on the U.S. Department of Justice Google Book Search Settlement Filing

              Posted in Copyright, E-Books, Google and Other Search Engines, Mass Digitizaton, Publishing on September 28th, 2009

              In "Justice and Google Books: First Thoughts about the Government's Brief," Kenneth Crews, Director of the Copyright Advisory Office at Columbia University, discusses the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division's filing on the Google Book Search Settlement.

              Here's an excerpt:

              The filing is remarkable for its lucid dissection of select issues. It is diplomatic, and it holds out repeated hope for the continued talks among the parties to the case. But clearly the DOJ does not like what it sees.

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                Google Book Settlement Fairness Hearing Postponed

                Posted in Copyright, E-Books, Google and Other Search Engines, Mass Digitizaton, Publishing on September 27th, 2009

                U.S. District Judge Denny Chin has postponed the October 7th fairness hearing for the Google Book Search Settlement; however, a status conference will occur on that date.

                Here's the ruling.

                Read more about it at "Google Judge Calls 'Status Conference' for 7th October" and "Judge Agrees to Postpone Google Books Hearing."

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                  "Copyright as Information Policy: Google Book Search from a Law and Economics Perspective"

                  Posted in Copyright, E-Books, Google and Other Search Engines, Mass Digitizaton, Publishing on September 24th, 2009

                  Douglas Lichtman, Professor of Law at the UCLA School of Law, has self-archived "Copyright as Information Policy: Google Book Search from a Law and Economics Perspective" in SSRN.

                  Here's an excerpt:

                  The copyright system has long been understood to play a critical role when it comes to the development and distribution of creative work. Copyright serves a second fundamental purpose, however: it encourages the development and distribution of related technologies like hardware that might be used to duplicate creative work and software that can manipulate it. When it comes to issues of online infringement, then, copyright policy serves two goals, not one: protect the incentives copyright has long served to provide authors, and at the same time facilitate the continued emergence of innovative Internet services and equipment. In this Chapter, I use the Google Book Search litigation as a lens through which to study copyright law’s efforts to serve these two sometimes-competing masters. The Google case is an ideal lens for this purpose because both the technology implications and the authorship implications are apparent. With respect to the technology, Google tells us that the only way for it to build its Book Search engine is to have copyright law excuse the infringement that is today by design part of the project. With respect to authorship, copyright owners are resisting that result for fear that the infringement here could significantly erode both author control and author profitability over the long run. I myself am optimistic that copyright law can and will balance these valid concerns. The Chapter explains how, discussing not only the formal legal rules but also the economic intuitions behind them.

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                    Pamela Samuelson: "DOJ Says No to Google Book Settlement"

                    Posted in Copyright, E-Books, Google and Other Search Engines, Mass Digitizaton, Publishing on September 22nd, 2009

                    In "DOJ Says No to Google Book Settlement," noted copyright expert Pamela Samuelson examines the U.S. Department of Justice's Google Book Search Settlement filing.

                    Here's an excerpt:

                    Among the most significant recommendations DOJ made for modifying the Proposed Settlement is one to ameliorate the risk of market foreclosure as to institutional subscriptions. DOJ suggests the parties should find a way to "provide some mechanism by which Google's competitors could gain comparable access to orphan works." That is, DOJ is recommending that Google, the Authors Guild and the publishers find a way to let firms such as Amazon.com and Microsoft get comparable licenses to out-of-print books, particularly to orphans. Google has previously denied that it was possible to include competitors in any license granted through the settlement. It will be interesting to see if the litigants want the settlement badly enough to conjure up a way to extend the license to firms other than Google.

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                      Comments on U.S. Copyright Office's "Mandatory Deposit of Published Electronic Works Available Only Online" Proposal

                      Posted in Copyright, Publishing on September 22nd, 2009

                      Comments on the U.S. Copyright Office's "Mandatory Deposit of Published Electronic Works Available Only Online" proposal are available, including comments by the American Library Association and the Association of Research Libraries.

                      Here's the Copyright Office's description of the proposal:

                      The Copyright Office of the Library of Congress is proposing to amend its regulations governing mandatory deposit of electronic works published in the United States and available only online.

                      The amendments would establish that such works are exempt from mandatory deposit until a demand for deposit of copies or phonorecords of such works is issued by the Copyright Office. They would also set forth the process for issuing and responding to a demand for deposit, amend the definition of a "complete copy" of a work for purposes of mandatory deposit of online—only works, and establish new best edition criteria for electronic serials available only online. The Copyright Office seeks public comment on these proposed revisions.

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                        Litman on "Real Copyright Reform"

                        Posted in Copyright, Digital Copyright Wars on September 21st, 2009

                        Jessica Litman, John F. Nickoll Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School, has self-archived "Real Copyright Reform" at SSRN.

                        Here's the abstract:

                        A copyright system is designed to produce an ecology that nurtures the creation, dissemination and enjoyment of works of authorship. When it works well, it encourages creators to generate new works, assists intermediaries in disseminating them widely, and supports readers, listeners and viewers in enjoying them. If the system poses difficult entry barriers to creators, imposes demanding impediments on intermediaries, or inflicts burdensome conditions and hurdles on readers, then the system fails to achieve at least some of its purposes. The current U.S. copyright statute is flawed in all three respects. In this article, I explore how the current copyright system is failing its intended beneficiaries. The foundation of copyright law's legitimacy, I argue, derives from its evident benefits for creators and for readers. That foundation is badly cracked, in large part because of the perception that modern copyright law is not especially kind to either creators or to readers; instead, it concentrates power in the hands of the intermediaries who control the conduits between creators and their audience. Those intermediaries have recently used their influence and their copyright rights to obstruct one another's exploitation of copyrighted works. I argue that the concentration of copyright rights in the hands of intermediaries made more economic sense in earlier eras than it does today. The key to real copyright reform, I suggest, is to reallocate copyright's benefits to give more rights to creators, greater liberty to readers, and less control to copyright intermediaries.

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