Cornell Agrees to Publishing Industry Reserve Guidelines
Cornell University. Cornell University and Publishers Announce New Copyright Guidelines Governing Use of Digital Course Materials. Sept. 19, 2006. We assiduously avoid reporting on press releases because they don’t constitute news, but this release from Cornell is important because we believe it signals the publishing industry’s attempt to circumvent both the Section 108 and Section 110 exceptions.
The press release notes that the new guidelines “govern the use of electronic course materials on the library’s electronic course reserves system, on faculty and departmental web pages, and through the various ‘course management’ web sites used at Cornell” and “affirm that the use of such content is governed by the same legal principles that apply to printed materials.”
Like the broadcasters’ attempt to ram Webcasting protections through the treaty process, we believe this an attempt to bypass federal copyright law thorough a private agreement between private actors. The Association of American Publishers has been clanging swords over e-reserves for at least a year, and now it gets a major Ivy League institution to sign off on this sort of agreement. And if the “guidelines” are consistent with copyright law, why are they necessary at all? This seems extraordinarily fishy.
(Editor’s Note: Copycense editors originally commented on this article in the Oct. 2, 2006, edition of Copycense Clippings.)
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