Librarians protest to parliament over DRM

Librarians have told the parliamentary inquiry into digital rights management that restrictions on access to digital media may prevent some legitimate uses.

The Libraries and Archives Copyright Alliance (LACA), which represents UK libraries and archives, told the inquiry that it has ‘grave concerns’ that DRM will override existing exceptions to copyright law that allow libraries to provide access to and lend publications. It is also concerned that once copyright expires, the DRM will still prevent access.

‘As custodians of human memory, a number [of libraries] would keep digital works in perpetuity and may need to be able to transfer them to other formats in order to preserve them and make the content fully accessible and usable once out of copyright,’ LACA wrote in its submission.

DRM, it said, must not ‘exert excessive control’ and that libraries’ copyright privileges must be sustained in the digital age.

The All Party Parliamentary Internet Group (APIG) inquiry into DRM has received over 90 written submissions in addition to oral reports. The APIG will publish its findings in the spring.

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