Thursday 13 December 2007

Copyright and preservation news from Israel

Thanks to Chris Rusbridge for forwarding on the following information from Rivka Shveiky, who is the head of the legal deposit department at the Jewish National and University Library in Israel:

“Some weeks ago, The Knesset (the Israeli parliament) passed two laws that have important implications for preservation in libraries and archives in Israel: the first - a new copyright law, the second - The National Library Law.

The new copyright law addresses the preservation needs in the clause "permitted usages in libraries and archives". For the sake of preservation, this clause includes permission to copy copyrighted works, from which the library or the archive possesses a copy, as long as the library or archive does not use the preservation copies as extra copies for everyday use. In practical terms this allows libraries and archives to copy works from obsolete formats to newer ones in order to preserve it for the future. The law also indirectly refers to the preservation of online content, by authorizing the Minister of Education to permit copying of certain kinds of works. The Minister of Education is also authorized to determine the terms for public access to the copied works.

The National Library Law contains a clause that gives The National Library even more extensive rights to copy copyrighted works for the purpose of preservation. The National Library received the right to copy any publication which is subject to Legal Deposit but failed to be deposited for any reason. While Internet sites are not subject to legal deposit in Israel, the new law allows The National Library to copy Internet sites, and thus enables the archiving of the Israeli domain. Public access to the archived Internet sites will be under the terms and conditions that the Minister of Justice and the Minister of Education will determine.”

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