A fight for open access
A dispute between the University of California (UC) and the publishing giant Elsevier echoes in academia. After months of negotiations, UC decided to terminate the agreement with the publisher as the latter was not willing to agree to UC’s terms. UC, where almost 10% of scientific articles in US are published, wanted to make those articles available to the public. Instead, Elsevier insisted on double payment for “open access” articles.
In May 2019, UC joined more than 135 educational institutions and organizations advocating open access, more financial transparency and less barriers in publishing scientific articles. Professor Steven Brenner from UC Berkeley said in an interview for The Daily Californian that the main purpose of the research at UC is to make the works available to the general public. He explained on the example of text and data mining that open access facilitates the process, whereas the traditional subscription model makes it almost impossible to mine.
Because of the termination of the contract with Elsevier, many researchers at UC are now unable to access important articles from their database. UC Berkeley Library helped and redirected them to alternative sources amongst which also open access articles. UC’s decision to terminate the contract might result in a change of perspective on scientific writing and publishing. The scientific community hopes this will encourage major changes in this area.
The Internet Archive will file an appeal against an unfair decision that ignores the value of the libraries’ work
The Internet Archive is a non-profit organization that maintains the Open Library, a digital library index, and is dedicated to preserving knowledge. As many of the works in the Internet Archive are under copyright, the Archive uses a system of controlled digital lending based on digital rights management to prevent unauthorized downloading or copying of copyrighted books. In March 2020, due to the circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, the Internet Archive established the National Emergency Library, eliminating the waiting lists used in the Open Library and expanding access to books for all readers. In June 2020, the Emergency National Library faced a lawsuit from four book publishers and was ultimately closed.
The 43rd session of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (hereinafter SCCR) made substantial progress on the issues advocated by the A2K Coalition (Access to Knowledge Coalition), which IPI is a member of. This year’s session was the most productive on the issues of exceptions and limitations. James Love (Knowledge Ecology International), a long-time observer at WIPO, described the outcome and the impact of the public interest community as the strongest since the conclusion of the Marrakech Treaty, which brought global copyright exceptions for the benefit of the blind and visually impaired.
Today, March 17, 2023, a symposium on law in the information society is taking place in the golden lecture hall of the Faculty of Law in Ljubljana. Dr. Maja Bogataj Jančič will present copyright aspects of artificial intelligence at the symposium.
The third day of the 43rd session of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights is intended for discussion on the topic of exceptions and limitations to copyright, especially in connection with the right to research.