January 25, 2022

EU: Commission Brokers Agreement For Mass Digitisation, MoU Signed

From EurActiv:

Books that have been gathering dust on library bookshelves can now be transformed into eBooks, according  to a pan European agreement signed by libraries, publishers and rightsholders yesterday.

Industry federations and the European Commission heralded the agreement signed yesterday between publishers, libraries, collecting societies and authors as groundbreaking as it would unleash countless books for consumption online.

“I am not aware of any Memorandum of Understanding of its kind,” Angela Mills Wade, the Executive Director of the European Publishers Council told EurActiv.


The ARROW project, which many libraries use to trace books’ rightsholders, has been recognised by the signatories of the agreement as indispensable for mass digitisation.

Whilst it could take 1,000 years for one person to clear the rights of just 500,000 books manually, that’s 4 hours per book, ARROW can reduce this to less than 5 minutes per title, according to a study by The British Library.

Read the Complete Article

See Also: “Copyright: Commission brokers agreement to increase the number of out-of-commerce books being made available again”  (Official News Release)

See Also: Direct to MoU (Full Text; PDF) and FAQ

See Also: BL Report: Electronic Clearance of Orphan Works Significantly Accelerates Mass Digitisation
British Library report.

See Also: “LIBER signs MoU on Out of Commerce Works on behalf of European Research Libraries”

Hat Tip and Thanks: @BlankTextField

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.