The Wellcome Trust, the National Library of Scotland and the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals are among the groups calling on fair copyright for libraries and archives across Europe.
The groups have signed up to the London Manifesto, put together because “non standardised copyright laws across Europe are failing to support the vision of a digital single market because they currently prevent fair access and use of digital content”.
Researchers in particular face “significant problems” as they work collaboratively across Europe, as they are subject to different copyright laws in different countries.
The manifesto outlines reforms that will “better support research, innovation and growth and will help create a digital single market”.
Other signatories to the manifesto, which will be launched today (1st April) at the CILIP copyright executive briefing in London, include the National Library of Wales, Royal Museums Greenwich and the Open Rights Group.
The groups say that reforms “would bolster the rights of disabled people by supporting equal access to knowledge” and would mean that “libraries can acquire and lend commercially available digital materials and, with archives, can continue to underpin knowledgeable societies in the digital age”.
Naomi Korn, chair of the Libraries & Archives Copyright Alliance, said: “We are calling on European legislators to implement the points in our manifesto because piecemeal and inconsistent copyright laws across Europe are not good for anyone. They are holding back progress, undermining research and innovation and will ultimately obstruct the vision of a digital single market.”
Martyn Wade, CILIP chair, said: “The Chartered Institute of Library & Information Professionals proudly supports the London Manifesto. I call on cultural organisations, charities, libraries, archives and universities to show their support for fair copyright laws across Europe by signing up in support of the manifesto. We will send the manifesto to MEPs, European Commissioners and national politicians to urge that these sensible reforms are adopted.”
The CILIP copyright executive briefing will include a keynote speech from Dr Ros Lynch, copyright and IP enforcement director at the UK Intellectual Property Office.