7 April 2016
Reform Copyright without Curtailing Internet Freedoms: IFLA Co-signs Open Letter to European Commission
IFLA has co-signed an open letter calling on the EU Commission to ensure that upcoming copyright reforms promote access to information and freedom of expression across Europe.
IFLA and its members work hard around the world to ensure that all citizens have access to knowledge and culture, which in turn is the basis for social, economic and cultural development. The internet, which has done so much to further this, needs to remain a space where people can express themselves and share ideas. Restrictive rules on internet intermediaries (including, potentially, libraries themselves) risk limiting their ability to pursue these positive developments, as IFLA has underlined by signing the Manilla Principles.
The reforms should rather provide an opportunity to address Europe's fragmented copyright system, as well as the tackle licence agreements which take away rights given to citizens by law. Effective change will mean that citizens, creators, and researchers - all of whom rely extensively on libraries to access and disseminate knowledge - are finally able to take advantage of the possibilities that European integration should bring.
IFLA is a member of Copyright4Creativity (C4C), a multi-sectoral alliance of civil society bodies representing libraries, educators, internet users, consumer organisations, technology firms and public interest groups. C4C is calling for a modernised copyright framework which supports creation and progress in Europe. IFLA is also active in promoting global change at the World Intellectual Property Office.