Copyright is a core element of libraries’ work, and this is why IFLA is an active advocate for better copyright laws. Our engagement at the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) is a key part of this.

WIPO’s copyright committee (SCCR) meets twice a year and has capacity to legislate on several matters. The topic of exceptions and limitations to copyright for libraries, archives and museums are on the table for discussion. The next meeting is getting closer: 26-30 November. IFLA will be there, so stay tuned for updates!

Why is it important?

At the last SCCR meeting, an action plan to organise work around exceptions and limitations to copyright for libraries, archives, museums, research and education was adopted. IFLA will be asking for all of the elements of this plan, such as the regional meetings and the final conference, to focus on providing the evidence necessary to define how WIPO can drive concrete progress for our institutions, notably through an international instrument.

Why IFLA needs your help

SCCR is composed of representatives from all United Nations member states. An important part of our advocacy work therefore has to happen at the national level, where they define their position. Your representatives need to know that local libraries want them to be active in support of progress on that dossier.

Our success at the global level depends very much on efforts at the national level. 

Take action!

That is why we encourage you to take action. Start by reaching out to your representatives to let them know that you are supportive of IFLA’s position. The people in charge are either in the Ministry of Culture or Copyright or Intellectual Property Office. Send a letter to explain why this topic is important to you. Let us know if you need a draft.

You can find out more about what is at stake at WIPO in our “Get into WIPO” guide and by watching our webinar on the matter.

If you follow copyright regularly, you may also want to think about getting in IFLA’s Copyright and other Legal Matters Network. IFLA uses this list to share news about copyright reforms, and help in advocating for better laws nationally and regionally, as we did in Colombia or South Africa, among others. We encourage members to share questions, updates and news from their countries.