Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR): 23rd Session

The 23rd session of the World Intellectual Property Organization’s Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR) ended on 2nd December 2011. IFLA welcomes the significant progress made by WIPO Member States towards achieving a global set of copyright limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives.

SCCR/23 concluded with agreement for further discussion on a list of topics relating to libraries and archives which includes preservation, right of reproduction and safeguarding copies, legal deposit, library lending, parallel importation, cross-border uses, orphan works, retracted and withdrawn works, liability of libraries and archives, technological measures of protection, contracts, and the right to translate works.

Member States have until the end of February 2012 to submit written comments to the WIPO Secretariat for inclusion in the document Provisional Working Document containing comments on and textual suggestions towards an appropriate international legal instrument (in whatever form) on exceptions and limitations for Libraries and Archives (SCCR/23/8 Prov.), which will be discussed at SCCR/24 in 2012.

Library and archives groups have been advocating for an international treaty so that WIPO Member States establish a set of basic, minimum limitations and exceptions for the benefit of libraries, archives, and their users in their national copyright laws.

For the first time, the WIPO SCCR, the main body that shapes international copyright law, dedicated three extra days to discussion of limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives. Many Member States made many positive interventions on behalf of libraries and archives and shared with each other examples of limitations and exceptions in their national laws, along with potential language for an instrument on the issue. A substantial delegation of librarians and archivists was on hand to offer advice and technical assistance to Member States.

During the WIPO SCCR/23, the delegations also discussed copyright limitations and exceptions for visually impaired people. The library community strongly supports an international binding instrument. A treaty will enable equal access to information for person with print and reading disabilities.

SCCR/23 statements on copyright limitations and exceptions for libraries and archives:

  • International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, Ingrid Parent, President (IFLA)
  • International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, Winston Tabb, Head of Delegation (IFLA
  • International Council on Archives (ICA)
  • Canadian Library Association (CLA)
  • Electronic Information for Libraries (EIFL)
  • Library Copyright Alliance (LCA)
  • Society of American Archivists (SAA)

SCCR/23 statements on copyright limitations and exceptions for the visually impaired:

  • International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA)
  • Canadian Library Association (CLA)
  • Electronic Information for Libraries (EIFL)
  • Library Copyright Alliance (LCA)

CLM (Committee on Copyright and other Legal Matters), Copyright, WIPO

Last update: 5 October 2012