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NEWS ARCHIVES ACROSS THEMES  
  News archives across months
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  News articles recently covered under
Copyrights/Data Integrity/Ethical issues
 


Appeals Court reverses district court's fair use decision in Cambridge University Press v. J.L. Albert
- 22 Oct 2018

In an opinion released October 19, 2018, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit unanimously reversed the district court's fair use decision in Cambridge University Press v. J.L. Albert and agrees with publishers reversing the GSU litigation involving the unauthorized use of numerous copyrighted works. The appeals court remanded the case to the district court for further proceedings consistent with its instructions.

In reversing the district court's erroneous findings and vacating the award of attorney's fees, the appellate panel for the second time rejected what it called a 'mathematical formula' of fair use in favour of a 'qualitative consideration of each instance of copying in the light of its particular facts.'

This kind of careful scrutiny and detailed application is essential to the efficacy of copyright law, whether in the print or digital environment. As the Supreme Court noted in its landmark Campbell v. Acuff-Rose decision, the four statutory factors may not 'be treated in isolation, one from another. All are to be explored, and the results weighed together, in light of the purposes of copyright.'

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Coalition of library and research community representatives submit proposed amendments to PSI directive
- 18 Oct 2018

A coalition of library and research community representatives, comprising EBLIDA, DCC, IFLA and SPARC Europe, recently submitted their position and proposed amendments to the Directive 2003/98/EC on the reuse of public sector information. The two documents were shared with EU rapporteurs and shadow rapporteurs with the request that these amendments be taken forward for consideration for the next stage of the process.

This latest move is part of a year-long advocacy effort to urge lawmakers to consider the library and research communities in the rewriting of Europe's copyright law.

Among the amendments proposed by the coalition was language: stipulating that all wholly or majority-funded research be made open as default, or as closed as necessary as required by other bodies of law; broadening the definition of where data is stored, i.e beyond institution and subject-based repositories to include other local, national or international data infrastructure; encouraging the consistent provision of data management plans; requiring that data follow the FAIR data principles; and specifying that Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) also be compatible with FAIR principles, being 'self-descriptive and using open protocols.'

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Elsevier and American Chemical Society file second lawsuit against ResearchGate for copyright infringement
- 10 Oct 2018

Elsevier and the American Chemical Society (ACS) have filed a second lawsuit against ResearchGate, alleging mass copyright infringement.

Last year, the International Association of Scientific, Technical and Medical Publishers, a group representing more than 140 publishers, wrote to ResearchGate, a popular social networking site for researchers, expressing concerns over the site's article-sharing practices. Dissatisfied with the response, the concerned parties created a new a group, known as the Coalition for Responsible Sharing.

The ACS and Elsevier, both of whom are members of the new group, filed a suit against ResearchGate last October in Berlin - where the site is based - which is still awaiting a decision. ResearchGate is a private company that launched in 2008 and has been funded by the likes of the Wellcome Trust, Goldman Sachs and Bill Gates.

The new lawsuit, filed in a Maryland court on October 2, comes amid concerns at the lack of action from ResearchGate to address the publishers' concerns.

James Milne, senior vice president at ACS and spokesperson for the coalition, estimates that ResearchGate still illicitly hosts around 4 million paywalled articles. A 2017 study found that 201 out of 500 randomly picked papers on ResearchGate breached copyright. ResearchGate declined to comment.

ResearchGate has refused to implement a user-friendly technical solution, which would inform authors whether they have the rights to upload a paper during submission.

As a result, over the last year, all 15 members of the coalition have collectively sent ResearchGate hundreds of thousands of takedown notices to remove papers on the site that infringe copyright. But that is only a short term solution, because newly published papers also continue to be added to the platform.

The new lawsuit became necessary because the verdict of the German one probably would not be admissible in the US, because the US contains the largest ResearchGate user base.

Last year, the ACS won another legal battle against Sci-Hub, a pirate site that provides researchers free access to millions of paywalled papers. The ACS filed suit last June, alleging copyright infringement, trademark counterfeiting and trademark infringement.

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LIBER welcomes library compromises, but TDM exception needs to go further
- 22 Jun 2018

The Association of European Research Libraries (LIBER) has consistently fought for copyright reforms which support research and innovation in Europe.

The report adopted by European Parliament's Legal Affairs Committee (JURI) on proposed changes to the Commission's Copyright in the Digital Single Market Directive includes draft compromises which are important to libraries in the digital era. LIBER has welcomed the amendments which enable libraries to preserve material in digital networks, mass digitise their in-copyright but commercially unavailable collections and to support digital and cross-border teaching.

On Text and Data Mining (TDM), the association has appreciated the improvements made by the European Parliament on the Commission's original proposal, particularly the inclusion of research libraries as a beneficiary of a mandatory TDM exception. TDM is an issue of major importance to LIBER and its 430 university, national and special libraries.

However, LIBER is disappointed that JURI's proposed TDM exception falls short of granting everyone with legal access to material and the right to analyse that content with computers. This undermines the European Commission's broader efforts to support Open Science and Artificial Intelligence.

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LIBER joins call for improved Text and Data Mining Exception
- 02 Apr 2018

Twenty eight organisations, including LIBER, have signed a letter calling for an improved Text and Data Mining Exception which will support research and innovation in Europe.

The letter was sent to the European Parliament Committee on Legal Affairs (JURI). The signatories include universities, technology companies, startups and scaleups, libraries, scientific and research funding and performing organisations, open access publishers, investigative and data journalists and nonprofits.

The growing use of big data and artificial intelligence tools in research and innovation now result from the seamless collaboration between public and private organisations. According to LIBER, this successful ecosystem will be penalised if the European Parliament's work on TDM in the Copyright Directive continues in its current direction.

The letter makes the point that Text and Data Mining plays a key role in Artificial Intelligence. Any comprehensive strategy to make Europe globally competitive in the race to develop and implement AI-powered solutions must therefore include robust support for TDM in both the public and private research industries, and not be reserved for very limited non-commercial public interest research projects.

It also notes that limiting the ability of private companies to carry out TDM in Europe will inevitably lead to the most promising European startups and companies relocating to the US or Japan, where the legal frameworks will allow them to have access to broader datasets, and where they will be able to build algorithms of better quality.

Specifically, the signatories of the letter are asking the JURI Committee to broaden the scope of Article 3.1 to include any person (natural or legal) that has lawful access to content, provided that reproduction or extraction is used for the sole purpose of text and data mining; support the European Commission's proposal on article 3.2 to ensure that contractual terms restricting the use of the exception are unenforceable; clarify in Article 3.3 that technical measures cannot be used to unreasonably restrict the exception's beneficiaries to conduct TDM; and add a paragraph in Article 3 to allow datasets created for the purpose of TDM to be stored on secured servers for future verification.

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