New Draft Action Plans On Copyright Limitations And Exceptions At WIPO 13/11/2017 by Catherine Saez, Intellectual Property Watch 4 Comments Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)The World Intellectual Property Organization has grasped the nettle after years of discussion on the issue of limitations and exceptions to copyright, and provided draft action plans, one each for libraries, archives, museums, educational research institutions, and persons with other disabilities than sight impairment. The plans, being discussed in this week’s committee meeting, include brainstorming sessions, studies, and regional seminars, and conferences to advance understanding and issues related to copyright for those particular actors. The WIPO secretariat has circulated a document [pdf] providing draft action plans for different strands of the discussions for the 2018-2019 biennium. The draft action plans are an initiative by the secretariat and are expected to be discussed on 16 November by member states. WIPO headquarters The 35th session of the Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR) is meeting this week, from 13-17 November. Discussions on which actors should benefit from an exceptions and limitations to copyright are difficult and have not progressed for several years. The best-known treaty dealing with exceptions and limitations to copyright is the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled, adopted in June 2013. Other areas of the discussions at the SCCR are limitations and exception for libraries; for archives; for museums, for educational and research institutions; and for persons with other disabilities than sight impairment. For libraries, the draft action plan foresees the development of a typology of various existing legislative and other mechanisms to provide limitations and exception to libraries in the first half of 2018. The work would be based on a scoping study [pdf] conducted by US professor and consultant Kenneth Crews, and the SCCR chair’s informal chart on limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives. In the second half of 2018, a brainstorming exercise is suggested, with professionals and stakeholders from the libraries, universities and research centres, publishers, and consumers, “to identify subjects that would benefit from further work at the international level (e.g. cross-border e-lending).” Also in the same period, regional seminars are foreseen with SCCR members and stakeholders with the objective to analyse the situation of libraries as well as educational and research institutions, and identify proposals or methods to address possible needs, considering soft law, contractual/licensing and normative approaches. In the first half of 2019, a conference on libraries and copyright and related rights would be organised, gathering SCCR members and stakeholders. Archives For archives, the draft action plan suggests the undertaking of a scoping study in the second half of 2018, on the legal conditions with regard to limitations and exceptions under which archives currently carry out their missions. The scoping study would concentrate on conservation/preservation, access (offline and online, including education and research). Also included in the action plan is the creation of a reference group of experts in the archive world, which will identify areas for action, considering soft law, contractual/licensing and normative approaches, in the second half of 2018 and first half of 2019. Following this identification, the document suggests the adoption of a further plan of action based on the solutions identified in the second half of 2019, including a possible conference. Museums The draft action plan also foresees a scoping study on museums for the next session of the SCCR, focusing in particular on conservation/preservation, access (offline and online, including for education and research. In the second half of 2018, the document suggest undertaking a brainstorming exercise with museum representatives and stakeholders to identify areas for action, and the secretariat suggests holding a conference in the first half of 2019 to present and validate the results of the brainstorming exercise, and also discuss possible solutions for the areas identified for action, considering soft law, contractual/licensing and normative approaches. Educational and Research Institutions For educational and research institution, the plan follows broadly what was proposed for libraries, but the work would be based on several documents, and in particular on a draft study prepared by Professor Daniel Seng, a law professor at the National University of Singapore. In the second half of 2018, the document foresees a study on the digital issues at stake for the activities of educational and research institutions at the national and international level. The study would cover areas such as the availability of e-learning modules and the development and operation of distance learning. Regional seminars are also foreseen by the document with SCCR members and stakeholders, followed by a conference in the second half of 2019. Persons with Other Disabilities For persons with disabilities other than visual impairment, the draft action plan envisages deepening the understanding of the subject by updating and expanding a scoping study on access to copyright protected works by persons with disabilities, authored by University of Colorado Professor Blake Reid and University of Cape Town Professor Caroline Ncube. Side events are also suggested to demonstrate innovative accessibility solutions with particular emphasis on education and audiovisual works. For this topic too, a brainstorming exercise is planned with stakeholders on possible solutions. Rights for Theatre Directors Separately, Russia submitted a proposal [pdf] this week on Strengthening the Protection of Theatre Directors’ Rights at the International Level. The Russian proposal suggests that the SCCR discuss the issue of providing a special international law regulation with regard to the rights of directors of theatrical productions. The aim of the proposal, the document says, “is to establish a specific legal status of directors of theatrical productions by way of introducing amendments into the existing international treaties or by way of drafting a new international treaty. Image Credits: Catherine Saez Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Related Catherine Saez may be reached at email@example.com."New Draft Action Plans On Copyright Limitations And Exceptions At WIPO" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.