Latest  News


"3-strikes" legislation for copyright infringers still a threat

In a great blow for consumers everywhere, the prospect of 3-strikes for copyright infringers has returned with a vengeance, as both the EU Council and French Constitutional court pushed forward with their respective legislation. The HADOPI bill is still alive, and the EU has shredded requirements for judicial oversight.

While in some countries this threat had been reduced in recent weeks, with strong protests in the UK and an open rejection in Germany, lobby groups and politicians are still pushing for the ruling in France and in the EP. [26oct09]

First International Open Access Week

Open Access Week logo Open Access Week (October 19-23, 2009) is an opportunity to broaden awareness and understanding of Open Access to research, including access policies from all types of research funders, within the international higher education community and the general public. The now-annual event has been expanded from a single day to accommodate widespread global interest in the movement toward open, public access to scholarly research results.

Open Access Week builds on the momentum started by the student-led national day of action in 2007 and carried by the 120 campuses in 27 countries that celebrated Open Access Day in 2008. 2008 organizers SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing & Academic Resources Coalition), the PLoS (The Public Library of Science), and Students for FreeCulture welcome new key contributors for 2009: OASIS (the Open Access Scholarly Information Sourcebook); Open Access Directory (OAD); and eIFL.net (Electronic Information for Libraries), which will again spearhead events in developing and transitional countries. [20oct09]

Kindle Store adds over 18,000 free public domain titles - plus fresh English classics remix

Recently Amazon has been adding public domain titles to its Kindle eBook store at a frantic pace: over 18,000 titles are now available as free downloads. The step is in addition to other 'remix' titles for sale, such as Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, that expands the original Jane Austen novel with "all-new scenes of giant lobsters, rampaging octopi, two-headed sea serpents, and other biological monstrosities", with some help by Brooklyn, NY-based writer Ben Winters.

This book continues the same ideas laid out in the previous novel of the "Jane Austen and monsters" series, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies created by the editors at Quirk Classics. A new trend including other classics of English literature now in the public domain, that are being re-actualized by adding a pinch of fun and creativity to their original texts. [13oct09]

6th Communia Workshop: Memory Institutions and Public Domain (1-2/10/09, Barcelona, Spain)

University of Barcelona, Spain Under the title Memory Institutions and the Public Domain, the 6th Communia Workshop took place on Thursday 1 and Friday 2 October 2009 at the University of Barcelona, Spain.

Presentations slides, abstracts, policy recommendations as well as for some speakers transcripts or papers are available from the the download section of this website and also by clicking directly on the presentations titles in the programme below. Policy recommendations and abstracts are also available in a single downloadable document.

[01oct09]

COMMUNIA Newsletter - September 2009

Here below please find some selected news related to latest and upcoming activities and events of COMMUNIA - The European Thematic Network on the Digital Public Domain. [27sept09]

ResearchGATE launches a free self-archiving repository

This project promises to make full-text articles available to the public, for free. Since there is no way for researchers to access millions of publications in their full version online, ResearchGATE will enable users to upload their published research directly to their profile pages (a system called the "green route" to Open Access). Our publication index, containing metadata for 35 million publications, will be automatically matched with the SHERPA RoMEO data set of journal and publisher's self-archiving agreements. As a result, authors will know which versions of their articles they can legally upload. Since nine out of ten journals allow self-archiving, this project could give thousands of researchers immediate access to articles that are not yet freely available. [19sept09]

Policy proposals for Canadian copyright law

Michael Geist, law professor at the University of Ottawa and long-time copyright reform advocate, has published a detailed submission for the current public consultation process. Among several provisions, he proposes: "Enhance the public domain. Don’t extend the length of copyright even further... Also, eliminate the “crown copyright” that keeps government works out of the public domain."

Mr. Geist further calls for an enlargment of "the 'fair dealing' provision of the proposed Canadian law, thus expanding what we in the US call fair use." Finally, he writes that "copyright law should strive for balance between creator rights and users’ rights... The law must be technologically neutral...strive for simplification and clarity...[and] embrace flexibility."

Read full article here. [14sept09]

“The Google Book Settlement: Love it or leave it.”

The proposed Google Book Settlement was on the agenda at the recent 2009 International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA) Conference. Among other speakers, Jonathan Band of Policybandwidth.com gave an overview of the Google Book Settlement. Band described the Google is scanning a corpus of some 30 million book, of which 20% of these books may be in the public domain, 5% are in print, and 75% are out of print. [11sept09]

COMMUNIA Newsletter - August 2009

Here below please find some selected news related to latest and upcoming activities and events of COMMUNIA - The European Thematic Network on the Digital Public Domain.[05aug09]

2009 COMMUNIA Network Enlargement

We just completed our second (and final) Member Enlargement selection, with a very large majority of the 41 current members expressing their voting preferences for the following ten new members (out of 13 applications received):

1. Helsinki University of Technology, Finland
2. Ljudmila (NGO), Slovenia
3. Haifa Center for Law & Technology, Israel
4. A Face (Association for Fair Audiovisual Copyright in Europe)
5. National Library of the Czech Republic
6. Iuridicum Remedium o.s (NGO), Czech Republic
7. University of Trento, Italy
8. Ozyegin University, Turkey
9. Digitale Allmend (NGO), Switzerland
10. Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex (UK)

More details will be available soon, as membership procedures are currently being finalised. [03Aug09]

Members map
Worldwide interactive
map including all
COMMUNIA Members

Presentations, papers and other material related to COMMUNIA events are available in the download page

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