PRESS RELEASE: LIBER Responds to Commission Communication on Copyright
09 December 2015
Time to get down to work on copyright reform for research and innovation
In an announcement today, the European Commission has set out its plans for EU copyright reform. It has been fourteen years since the ‘InfoSoc’ Directive. LIBER the Association of European Research Libraries welcomes the much needed attention that the communication places on supporting research and innovation, cross border collaboration and increased harmonisation, all of which facilitate research excellence.
In particular, LIBER is in agreement with the Commission that researchers should be able to carry out text and data mining (TDM) across the EU. LIBER President Kristiina Hormia-Poutanen said today “TDM enables researchers to make new discoveries that help to drive science, competitiveness and innovation but until now, EU researchers have not been making full use of the technology – they need legal certainty. The Commission communication implies that there will be a mandatory copyright exception for text and data mining which we very much welcome. LIBER will hold the Commission to its word on this when concrete proposals are launched in 2016.”
LIBER advocates a mandatory and non-overridable copyright exception for text and data mining for both commercial and non-commercial activity. This has been driven by a strong demand from its members and the broader research community as illustrated by the hundreds of organisations and individuals who have signed up to the Hague Declaration on Knowledge Discovery in the Digital Age which promotes better access to facts, data and ideas.
Importantly for LIBER, the Commission communication is a first step but there is still room for improvement. In line with The Hague Declaration, LIBER’s President sees access to knowledge as a key area requiring attention as legislation takes shape over the coming months. “we believe that the exception should enable all those who have legal access, to be able to mine content. The current communication limits TDM to public interest research organisations and for scientific research purposes. If we are serious about innovation in the EU, we require a less constricted system for the benefit of all stakeholders including citizen scientists. From a cultural heritage perspective, there are opportunities in harnessing big data that reach beyond the lab. Getting the best out of digital collections could bring improvements to education for example.”
LIBER’s mission is to create an information infrastructure which enables world-class research. This can only happen when data is freely accessible and when researchers have the tools and skills to analyse that data. To this effect LIBER will continue to be proactively involved in the policy process as the copyright proposals move through the institutions in 2016.
For further information :
The Hague Declaration www.thehaguedeclaration.com
LIBER Fact Sheet: A Copyright Exception for Text and Data Mining
Contact: Helen Frew, LIBER Advocacy Officer: Helen.firstname.lastname@example.org +31(0)703140137