A study commissioned and sponsored by the Library of Congress has found that US copyright laws create an onerous barrier to the preservation of sound recordings by libraries and other archiving institutions. The study concludes that current copyright laws force libraries to choose between doing their jobs as archivists and breaking the law. In relevant part:
Were copyright law followed to the letter, little audio preservation would be undertaken…
While libraries supposedly have some leeway in preserving audio recordings, they find it “virtually impossible to reconcile their responsibility for preserving and making accessible culturally important sound recordings with their obligation to adhere to copyright laws”.
The report was mandated under the National Recording Preservation Act of 2000 and will be published by the Library of Congress later in 2010.
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