EFF and Public-Interest-Group Coalition Issue Fair Use Principles for User-Generated Video Content

The Electronic Frontier Foundation and a coalition of public-interest groups (the Center for Social Media, School of Communications, American University; Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property, Washington College of Law, American University; Public Knowledge; Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School; and the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California) have issued "Fair Use Principles for User-Generated Video Content."

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

Fair uses have been mistakenly caught up in copyright enforcement dragnets in the past. For example, earlier this year blogger Michelle Malkin's video about rapper Akon was erroneously taken down from YouTube after Universal Music Group (UMG) claimed copyright infringement. In that case, two excerpts from Akon music videos were embedded in a longer commentary about the rap star. Although UMG ultimately admitted its mistake, automated content filtering raises the possibility that commentaries like this might be blocked preemptively in the future.

With cases like this one in mind, "Fair Use Principles for User-Generated Content" describes six steps that service providers and copyright owners should take to minimize damage to fair use during copyright enforcement efforts. One key principle is "three strikes before blocking" — verifying that the video matches the video of a copyrighted work, that the audio matches the audio of the same work, and that nearly all of the clip is comprised of that single work. In addition, if a video is blocked by a content filter, the creator should be given an opportunity to dispute the filter's determination.

Yale Will Work with Microsoft to Digitize 100,000 Books

The Yale University Library and Microsoft will work together to digitize 100,000 English-language out-of-copyright books, which will be made available via Microsoft’s Live Search Books.

Here’s an excerpt from the press release:

The Library and Microsoft have selected Kirtas Technologies to carry out the process based on their proven excellence and state-of-the art equipment. The Library has successfully worked with Kirtas previously, and the company will establish a digitization center in the New Haven area. . . .

The project will maintain rigorous standards established by the Yale Library and Microsoft for the quality and usability of the digital content, and for the safe and careful handling of the physical books. Yale and Microsoft will work together to identify which of the approximately 13 million volumes held by Yale’s 22 libraries will be digitized. Books selected for digitization will remain available for use by students and researchers in their physical form. Digital copies of the books will also be preserved by the Yale Library for use in future academic initiatives and in collaborative scholarly ventures.

Open-Source IRStats Released: Use Statistics for EPrints and DSpace

Eprints.org has released IRStats, an open source use statistics analysis package that analyzes both EPrints (versions 2 and 3) and DSpace (beta functionality) logs. The software is under a BSD license, and it requires Perl, awstats, MySQL, Maxmind Organisation Database, ChartDirector, and a CGI-capable Web server.

A description of IRStats features is available as well as examples of its use. For additional information on the project, see "Introduction to IRS."

Just When You Thought Net Neutrality Was Dead

Recent actions by AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon have rekindled the net neutrality debate, and Senators Byron Dorgan and Olympia Snowe are asking for a Senate Commerce Committee investigation into net neutrality issues.

Here's an excerpt from "Once Thought Dead, Net Neutrality Roars Back to Center Stage":

And then came the bad behavior, the litany of minor cases, dropping like early Christmas gifts into the laps of net neutrality advocates across the country. AT&T censored political lyrics in a Pearl Jam webcast (then apologized). Verizon initially blocked a mass text message from NARAL Pro-Choice America (then apologized). Comcast was found to be delaying BitTorrent and Lotus Notes traffic (and remains unapologetic). AT&T's new terms of service appeared to prohibit criticism of the company (the company apologized and changed the terms).

Read more about it at "Comcast's Internet 'Throttling' Exposes Tip of the Iceberg," "Comcast Needs to Come Clean," "Obama Promises to Reinstate Net Neutrality during First Year in Office," and "Recent Neutrality Scuffles Highlight Need for Transparency."

Mellon Funds Phase 2 of the eXtensible Catalog Project

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has given the University of Rochester Libraries a grant to support continued work on its eXtensible Catalog project.

Here's an excerpt from the announcement:

A $749,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to the University’s River Campus Libraries will be used toward building and deploying the eXtensible Catalog (XC), a set of open-source software applications libraries can use to share their collections. The grant money will also be used to support broad adoption of the software by the library community. The grant and additional funding from the University and partner institutions makes up the $2.8 million needed for the project. The resulting system will allow libraries to simplify user access to all library resources, both digital and non-digital. . . .

It [XC] will provide a platform for local development and experimentation that will ultimately allow libraries to share their collections through a variety of applications, such as Web sites, institutional repositories, and content management systems.

University of Rochester staff will build XC in partnership with the following institutions: Notre Dame University, CARLI (Consortium of Academic and Research Libraries in Illinois), Rochester Institute of Technology, Oregon State University, the Georgia PINES Consortium, Cornell University, the University at Buffalo, Ohio State University, and Yale University. Each XC partner institution has committed staff time or monetary contributions toward the development of XC.

A second group of institutions will contribute to the project through the participation of its staff members in XC-user research, or by providing advisory support to the University’s development team. These institutions include the Library of Congress, OCLC, Inc., North Carolina State University, Darien (CT) Public Library, Ohio State University, and Yale University.

Creative Commons Seeks Feedback from Librarians about LiveDVD

Timothy Vollmer has announced on Lita-L (10/28/07 message) that the Creative Commons is looking for feedback about its LiveDVD for libraries, which is part of its LiveContent project.

Here's an excerpt from the message:

Creative Commons is working with Fedora on creating a LiveDVD for libraries that contains free, open source software (like OpenOffice, The Gimp, Inkscape, Firefox) and open content, including CC-licensed media such as audio, video, photographs, text and open educational resources. . . .

The next iteration we're working on is a LiveDVD for libraries, providing an informational resource and creative tool that would allow library patrons to test open source software, view (and rip, remix, reuse) open content, and even create new content with the software contained on the disc. . . .

We want to get some more feedback/comments/suggestions on the project and are also looking to identify librarians and interested groups to test out the LiveDVD!

DSpace 1.5 Alpha Released

The 1.5 alpha version of the popular DSpace repository software has been released.

Here's an excerpt from "DSpace 1.5 Alpha with Experimental Binary Distribution" by Richard Jones:

There are big changes in this code base, both in terms of functionality and organisation. First, we are now using Maven to manage our build process, and have carved the application into a set of core modules which can be used to assemble your desired DSpace instance. . . .

The second big and most exciting thing is that Manakin is now part of our standard distribution, and we want to see it taking over from the JSP UI over the next few major releases. . . .

In addition to this, we have an Event System which should help us start to decouple tightly integrated parts of the repository. . . . Browsing is now done with a heavily configurable system . . . . Tim Donohue's much desired Configurable Submission system is now integrated with both JSP and Manakin interfaces and is part of the release too.

Further to this we have a bunch of other functionality including: IP Authentication, better metadata and schema registry import, move items from one collection to another, metadata export, configurable multilingualism support, Google and html sitemap generator, Community and Sub-Communities as OAI Sets, and Item metadata in XHTML head ‹meta› elements.

ARL Annual Salary Survey 2006–07 Published

The ARL Annual Salary Survey 2006–07 has been published, and it can be purchased from ARL.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

The 2006–07 data show that ARL librarians’ salaries outperformed inflation. The combined median professional salary in US and Canadian ARL university libraries was $59,648—a 4.5% increase from the previous year. Over the same period, the Consumer Price Index rose 4.1% in the US and 2.4% in Canada. . . .

Gender-based salary differentials persist in ARL libraries in 2006–07. The overall salary for women in the 113 ARL university libraries is 95.7% of that paid to men; this figure compares to 95.5% in 2005–06. While the data show a marked closure of the gender gap in ARL libraries over the long term—in 1980–81, women in ARL libraries were paid roughly 87% of what men were paid—the data also raise the possibility that the closure has peaked, and that a 5% gap between men’s and women’s salaries may persist.

Opensecrets.Org Lists Reed Elsevier as One of Sen. Inhofe's Top Contributors

In a list of Sen. James Inhofe's top contributors for the 2001-2006 Senate election cycle, Opensecrets.Org identifies Reed Elsevier Inc. as his 11th largest contributor, with $13,250 in contributions. Opensecrets.Org notes:

The organizations themselves did not donate, rather the money came from the organization's PAC, its individual members or employees or owners, and those individuals' immediate families. Organization totals include subsidiaries and affiliates.

Before he withdrew them, Sen. Inhofe was the sponsor of two amendments” to delete or weaken the NIH Open Access Mandate in the FY 2008 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations bill.

Opensecrets.Org also provides summary information about Reed Elsevier's 2006 lobbying activity, which includes a chart showing 1998-2007 totals.

Inhofe Withdraws Amendments, NIH Open Access Mandate Passes Senate

Peter Suber reports that Sen. James Inhofe withdrew his amendments to the FY 2008 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations bill that would have deleted or weakened the NIH open access mandate, and that the bill has passed the Senate with the mandate intact.

The House and Senate bills will be reconciled in the fall, and President Bush should receive the final bill by year's end. It is anticipated that President Bush will veto the bill; however, the mandate's strong showing during Congressional deliberations should help ensure its future passage in post-veto legislation.

Here's an excerpt from "Defying President Bush, Senate Passes Spending Bill for Health and Education Programs" (subscription required for full access):

The president has threatened to veto the measure over what he has called "irresponsible and excessive" spending. It would take a two-thirds majority in both the Senate and the House of Representatives to override a veto. The Senate, which approved the bill 75 to 19, apparently could muster that margin, but the House might not. It passed its version of the bill in July by a vote of 276 to 140, 14 votes shy of the two-thirds mark.

The Alliance for Taxpayer Access has issued a press release about the legislative victory.

Read more about it at "More on Inhofe" and "OA Mandate at NIH Passes the Senate."

A Study of Curation and Preservation Issues in the eCrystals Data Repository and Proposed Federation

JISC's eBank UK project, which is now in phase three, has released A Study of Curation and Preservation Issues in the eCrystals Data Repository and Proposed Federation, which addresses key issues related to the establishment of the eCrystals Federation.

Here's an excerpt from "eBank Phase 3: Transitioning to the eCrystals Federation" that explains the overall project:

This project will progress the establishment of a global Federation of data repositories for crystallography by performing a scoping study into the feasibility of constructing a network of data repositories: the eCrystals Federation. The Federation approach is presented as an innovative domain model to promote Open Access to data more widely and to facilitate take-up.

It builds on the work of the eBank project, and has links to Repository for the Laboratory (R4L), SPECTRa and SMART Tea projects in chemistry. The Federation will contribute to the development of a digital repository e-infrastructure for research and will inform the Repository Support Project. . . .

In Phase 3, partners will assess organisational issues and promote advocacy, examine interoperability associated with research workflow and data deposit, harmonise the metadata application profiles from repositories operating on different platforms (EPrints, DSpace & ReciprocalNet), investigate aggregation issues arising from harvesting metadata from repositories situated within the information environments developed in other countries (EU, USA & Australia) and scope the issues of the Federation of institutional archives interoperating with an international subject archive (IUCr).

Canadian Public Domain Music Score Site Forced to Remove All Scores

The International Music Score Library Project, which offered music scores that were in the public domain in Canada, has been forced to remove all scores because it can not afford to comply with the terms of a second cease and desist letter from Universal Edition. The publisher's letter indicated that some scores were still under copyright in Europe, where the term of protection is 20 years longer than in Canada, and that some unidentified works were still under Canadian copyright.

The IMSLP Website remains, but it now consists only of a lengthy open letter and discussion forums.

Michael Geist, Canada Research Chair of Internet and E-commerce Law at the University of Ottawa, commented in a posting on the case:

In this particular case, UE demanded that the site use IP addresses to filter out non-Canadian users, arguing that failing to do so infringes both European and Canadian copyright law. It is hard to see how this is true given that the Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that sites such as IMSLP are entitled to presume that they are being used in a lawful manner and therefore would not rise to the level of authorizing infringement. The site was operating lawfully in Canada and there is no positive obligation in the law to block out non-Canadians.

As for a European infringement, if UE is correct, then the public domain becomes an offline concept, since posting works online would immediately result in the longest single copyright term applying on a global basis. That can't possibly be right. Canada has chosen a copyright term that complies with its international obligations and attempts to import longer terms – as is the case here – should not only be rejected but treated as copyright misuse.

Read more about it in "European Copyright Law Used to Threaten Canadian Public Domain Site" and "Music Score Library Goes Off-Line after Cease and Desist Warning."

Brewster Kahle on Libraries Going Open

Brewster Kahle's "Libraries Going Open" document provides some details on where the Internet Archive and the Open Content Alliance are going with projects involving mass digitization of microfilm, mass digitization of journals, ILL of scanned out-of-print books, scanning books on demand, and other areas.

Text of the Inhofe Amendments That Affect the NIH Open Access Mandate

Below is the text of Sen. James Inhofe's amendments to the FY 2008 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations bill that affect the NIH open access mandate (thanks to Heather Joseph at SPARC).

Amendment 3416:

To strike provision to maintain the NIH voluntary research public access policy

Beginning on page 76 strike line 24 and all that follows through line 7 on page 77.

Amendment 3417:

To modify provisions to maintain the NIH voluntary research public access policy

On page 77 line 7 insert before the period the following:

'and in addition only where allowed by and in accordance with the policies of the publishers who have conducted the peer review and accepted the manuscripts for publication'

Here's the affected section of the bill:

Page 76

24 SEC. 221. The Director of the National Institutes of
25 Health shall require that all investigators funded by the

Page 77

1 NIH submit or have submitted for them to the National
2 Library of Medicine’s PubMed Central an electronic
3 version of their final, peer-reviewed manuscripts upon ac-
ceptance for publication to be made publicly available no
5 later than 12 months after the official date of publication:
6 Provided, That the NIH shall implement the public access
7 policy in a manner consistent with copyright law.

ALA Says Contact Senate Before Noon Tomorrow to Support NIH Open Access Mandate

The American Library Association is strongly recommending that U.S. citizens who want to support the NIH open access mandate by voicing their opposition to the amendments (#3416 and #3417) to the FY 2008 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations bill proposed by Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) do so by noon on Monday, October 22nd.

Here's the latest action alert from ALA: "Fight Continues for Public Access to NIH Medical Information—Urge Your Senators to Support NIH Public Access Policy (and Oppose Inhofe Amendments)"

You can use a cut-and-paste version of the Alliance for Taxpayer Access text about the amendments to simplify the process of sending the e-mail via the ALA Web form, but personalizing this text with an added sentence or two is recommended.

NIH Mandate May Be Deleted or Weakened: Urgent Need to Contact the Senate

Peter Suber reports that the NIH open access mandate may be deleted or weakened by last-minute amendments to the FY 2008 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations bill (see his posting reproduced in full below).

You can easily contact your senators using the ALA Action Alert Web form with my cut-and-paste version of the below ATA text or you can use the same form to write your own text.

Urgent action need to support the NIH bill

The provision to mandate OA at the NIH is in trouble.  Late Friday, just before the filing deadline, a Senator acting on behalf of the publishing lobby filed two harmful amendments, one to delete the provision and one to weaken it significantly.  We thought we'd done everything and only had to wait for the Senate vote.  But now we have to mobilize once more, and fast, to squash these amendments.  Here an announcement from the Alliance for Taxpayer Access:

URGENT CALL TO ACTION: Tell your Senator to OPPOSE amendments that strike or change the NIH public access provision in the FY08 Labor/HHS appropriations bill

The Senate is currently considering the FY08 Labor-HHS Bill, which includes a provision (already approved by the House of Representatives and the full Senate Appropriations Committee), that directs the NIH to change its Public Access Policy so that participation is required (rather than requested) for researchers, and ensures free, timely public access to articles resulting from NIH-funded research. On Friday, Senator Inhofe (R-OK), filed two amendments (#3416 and #3417), which call for the language to either be stricken from the bill, or modified in a way that would gravely limit the policy’s effectiveness.

Amendment #3416 would eliminate the provision altogether. Amendment #3417 is likely to be presented to your Senator as a compromise that “balances” the needs of the public and of publishers. In reality, the current language in the NIH public access provision accomplishes that goal. Passage of either amendment would seriously undermine access to this important public resource, and damage the community’s ability to advance scientific research and discovery.

Please contact your Senators TODAY and urge them to vote “NO” on amendments #3416 and #3417. (Contact must be made before close of business on Monday, October 22). A sample email is provided for your use below. Feel free to personalize it, explaining why public access is important to you and your institution. Contact information and a tool to email your Senator are online [here]. No time to write? Call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121 to be patched through to your Senate office.

If you have written in support before, or when you do so today, please inform the Alliance for Taxpayer Access. Contact Jennifer McLennan through jennifer@arl.org or by fax at (202) 872-0884.

Thanks for your continued efforts to support public access at the National Institutes of Health.

—–

SAMPLE EMAIL

Dear Senator:

On behalf of [your organization], I strongly urge you to OPPOSE proposed Amendments #3416 and #3417 to the FY 2008 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations bill (S.1710). These amendments would seriously impede public access to taxpayer-funded biomedical research, stifling critical advancements in lifesaving research and scientific discovery. The current bill language was carefully crafted to balance the needs of ALL stakeholders, and to ensure that the American public is able to fully realize our collective investment in science.

To ensure public access to medical research findings, language was included in the in the FY 2008 Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Bill directing the NIH to make a much-needed improvement to its Public Access Policy — requiring that NIH-funded researchers deposit their manuscripts in the National Library of Medicine’s online database to be made publicly available within one year of publication in a peer-reviewed journal.  This change is supported by NIH Director Elias Zerhouni, and a broad coalition of educational institutions, scientific researchers, healthcare practitioners, publishers, patient groups, libraries, and student groups — representing millions of taxpayers seeking to advance medical research.

Amendment #3416 would eliminate this important provision, leaving only a severely weakened, voluntary NIH policy in place. Under the voluntary policy (in place for more than two years) less than 5% of individual researchers have participated — rendering the policy ineffective. The language in Amendment #3417 would place even further restrictions on the policy, ensuring that taxpayers – including doctors and scientists – are unable to take full advantage of this important public resource.

Supporting the current language in the FY08 LHHS Appropriations Bill is the best way to ensure that taxpayers’ investment in NIH-funded research is used as effectively as possible.  Taxpayer-funded NIH research belongs to the American public. They have paid for it, and it is for their benefit.

I urge you to join the millions of scientists, researchers, libraries, universities, and patient and consumer advocacy groups in supporting the current language in the FY08 LHHS Appropriations bill and require NIH grantees to deposit in PubMed Central final peer-reviewed manuscripts no later than 12 months following publication in a peer-reviewed journal. Vote NO on Amendments #3416 and #3417.

Comment.  The ATA is not exaggerating.  This is urgent.  If you're a US citizen, please contact your Senators and spread the word.  Note the short deadline.  Your Senators must hear from you before the end of business on Monday, October 22:  two days from now.

RUBRIC Toolkit: Institutional Repository Solutions Released

The RUBRIC Project has released the RUBRIC Toolkit: Institutional Repository Solutions.

Here's an excerpt from RUBRIC Toolkit: About the RUBRIC Project and the Toolkit page:

The RUBRIC Toolkit is a legacy of the RUBRIC Project, reflecting the discussions, investigation, phases, processes, issues and experiences surrounding the implementation of an Institutional Repository (IR). The sections are based on the collaborative experience of the eight Australian and New Zealand Universities involved in the project.

The content for the RUBRIC Toolkit developed organically and collaboratively in the project wiki over an extended period of time. It was then refined and developed. Project members have populated the Toolkit with useful resources and tools that can be used by other Project Managers and Institutions implementing an IR.

The RUBRIC Toolkit was released in October 2007 and will continue to be updated until the end of the RUBRIC Project in December 2007. As such the Toolkit captures the "best" of available advice, experience and outcomes available for IR development in 2007 and provides links to further reading wherever possible.

Major Internet and Media Companies Sign Off on Agreement about Third-Party Copyrighted Materials in User-Generated Content

Major Internet and media companies, including CBS, Dailymotion, Fox, Microsoft, NBC Universal, Viacom, and Walt Disney, have agreed to abide by a new set of principles (User Generated Content Principles) for detecting and regulating the use of third-party copyrighted materials in user-generated content.

Here's an excerpt from the press release:

The principles, which are attached and available in full at www.ugcprinciples.com, call for a broad range of constructive and cooperative efforts by copyright owners and UGC services. They include:

  • Implementation of state of the art filtering technology with the goal to eliminate infringing content on UGC services, including blocking infringing uploads before they are made available to the public;
  • Upgrading technology when commercially reasonable;
  • Cooperating to ensure that the technology is implemented in a manner that effectively balances legitimate interests, including fair use;
  • Cooperation in developing procedures for promptly addressing claims that content was blocked in error;
  • Regularly using the technology to remove infringing content that was uploaded before the technology could block it;
  • Identification and removal of links to sites that are clearly dedicated to, and predominantly used for, the dissemination of infringing content; and,
  • Promotion of content-rich, infringement-free services by continuing to cooperatively test new technologies and by collaboratively updating these principles as appropriate to keep current with evolving developments.

You can read more about this at "Consortium's User-generated Content Principles Extend Far beyond Fair Use" and "Studios Unveil Their Copyright Protection Guidelines," and "Unprincipled 'Principles' for User Generated Content."

Free Flow of Information Act Passes House, but Limits Blogger Protection

The Free Flow of Information Act of 2007 has passed the House, shielding most journalists and some bloggers who do not want to reveal confidential background story information during federal investigations. At the last minute, the bill was amended so that bloggers and reporters must derive "a substantial portion of the person's livelihood or for substantial financial gain" from their work.

Read more about it at "House Passes Federal Journalist Shield, Includes Bloggers" and "U.S. House Overwhelmingly Passes Federal Shield Bill, Changes Definition of Who Is Covered."

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