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WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights Thirty-Fifth Session

Nobody among members of the World Intellectual Property Organization disputes the importance of the public services provided by libraries and archives. However, positions are different when it comes to providing exceptions to copyright to those entities so they can continue to dispense their services, in particular in the digital age. An updated study presented in a WIPO committee shows that most countries have exceptions relating to libraries, but termed in very different ways, and are hesitant on how to deal with digital technologies.  Prof. Kenneth Crews, former director of the copyright advisory office at Columbia University (US) and now an attorney at Gipson, Hoffman & Pancione in Los Angeles, today presented the latest version [pdf] of his original 2008 study, already updated in 2014 and in 2015, during the 35th session of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights, [that took] place from 13-17 November. According to Crews, since 2015, a number of countries have revised their copyright laws and the exceptions they provide to libraries and archives, which, he said, serves as a reminder that this is a dynamic issue. The study covers all 191 WIPO member states and found that 161 of those have at least one provision in their copyright statutes that explicitly applies to libraries or archives…”

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