First EUscreen International Conference on Content Selection Policies and Contextualisation

Date: 7-8 October 2010.
Location: Casa del Cinema. Largo Marcello Mastroianni 1, Rome, Italy.

EUscreen has organized a two-day conference on content selection policies and contextualisation in the audiovisual domain, to be held in Rome on October 7 and 8 2010. The conference will focus on contextualisation of audiovisual material, especially in the academic field. The conference programme is still under construction, but the first day includes a plenary session focussing on contextualisation of audiovisual material with keynotes and presentations of use cases. The second day comprises two workshops: one on European IPR legislations in the audiovisual sector and the impact on the exploitation of audiovisual and television archives, and one on best practices and guidelines for digitising  audiovisual heritage. Attendance at the conference is free but online registration is required.

Confirmed speakers

  • Prof. Andrew Hoskins, Professor of Cultural Studies at Nottingham University on media, digitization and memory.
  • Dr. Lilian Landes, scientific co-ordinator of the recensio.net project at Bavaria State Library on creating a European Open Access infrastructure for historical reviews.
  • Dr. Alec Badenoch, from Utrecht University on Making Europe, virtual exhibits on European cultural heritage.
  • Johan Söderberg, lecturer and filmmaker from Sweden on using and reusing archival material in his works, like the series “Read my lips”.
  • Dr. Tibor Hirsch, from Film Studies at ELTE University on using digitized material in a creative way to help students understanding the language of film and television.
  • Dr. Andreas Fickers, from the Art and Social Sciences at Maastricht University on audiovisual source critique in the age of the web 2.0.
  • Peter B. Kaufman, President and executive producer of Intelligent Television. He is also the author of “Marketing Culture in the Digital Age: A Report on New Business Collaborations between Libraries, Museums, Archives, and Commercial Companies”.
  • Prof. John Ellis, Professor of Media at Royal Holloway – University of London.

More information about the conference can be found here.

Today book release “Archives 2020” by Virtueel Platform about digital archives

By Wietske van den Heuvel

The book Archive2020 – Sustainable Archiving of Born-Digital Cultural Content discusses the many issues that arise when digital content is being archived. Although a lot of material currently is being digitised, other digital material threatens to disappear from the public domain. This is due to software and hardware developments, migration issues and the rise of fast Internet connections. Together with experts from the field of digital archiving, the Virtueel Platform conducted a research on the sustainability of digital archives, content and culture. The book can be downloaded as a pdf or ordered for free, both on the website of Virtueel Platform.

More resources needed for Europeana on-line library

Press release by the European Parlement

“The EU’s on-line library, museum and archive – Europeana – needs content from more Member States and further EU funding, according to MEPs. Access to the portal’s material without downloading should be free but copyright must be respected, says a resolution adopted by Parliament on Wednesday.
Online since November 2008, Europeana now contains about 7 million digitised works, including books, maps, film clips and photographs. Almost half of the contributions to it (47%) come from France; other big contributors are Germany (16%), the Netherlands (8%), and the UK (8%). In 2011 Europeana.eu will be more multilingual and include semantic web features. The Europeana office is hosted by the Dutch Royal Library in The Hague.

More contributions and funding needed

MEPs support the goal of having 10 million objects in Europeana by this June and call for a target of at least 15 million by 2015. They urge governments and cultural institutions to speed up digitisation and provide more files, especially audiovisual material, “paying special attention to those works which deteriorate easily”. The resolution urges the Commission and Member States to make Europeana “one of the main reference points for education and research purposes”.
While encouraging public-private partnerships, MEPs also argue that a substantial part of the costs of digitisation should be covered by a separate budget line in the next EU long-term budget after 2013. MEPs also propose a funding and advertising campaign entitled “Join Europeana”.

Copyright and access

At the same time, Europeana should fully respect intellectual property rights, although without creating any new copyright or privatising access to digital content, stress MEPs. According to the resolution, “access to the Europeana portal and viewing documents without downloading must be free of charge for private individuals and public institutions” and any charges for downloads and printouts of copyright materials “should be socially acceptable”. MEPs also stress that “the portal should take into account the needs of disabled people”.
According to the EP, Europeana should be able to offer in-copyright as well as out-of-print and orphan works (whose authors cannot be identified), for example, through extended collective licensing. MEPs “endorse the Commission’s intention to establish a simple and cost-efficient rights clearance system” working in close co-operation with all the stakeholders. They also call on the Commission to introduce a legislative proposal on the digitisation, preservation and dissemination of orphan works, and to develop their database.”

Deadline for registration FRAME Seminar closes on 30th April 2010

The “Institut National de l’Audiovisuel” (INA) in collaboration with the International Federation of Television Archives (FIAT/IFTA) and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) organizes the FRAME seminar from 21st June to 2nd July 2010.

FRAME, Future for Restoration of Audiovisual Memory in Europe, is designed for the European professionals of the media industry who are involved in management and use of archives and address the issue of new technologies applied to the restoration, digitalisation, preservation and use of television and film archives.

The session will focus on issues and tools available for film and TV archive management, so as to enable participants to choose the technologies best fitted to their needs and to the strategy defined for their archives.

Read more on the  FIAT/IFTA site

Europeana has released it’s Public Domain Charter

Europeana released it’s Public Domain Charter to protect the Public Domain. According to Europeana it is:

“a statement that calls for the Public Domain to be kept freely accessible to Europe’s citizens. Europeana believes that material held in trust for the public for generations, often at taxpayers’ expense, should not enter the private sector when it is digitised.” (Europeana news letter)

Digitalisation of cultural heritage that is already part of the public domain sometimes creates new and exclusive rights which restrict access to the digital version. The Public Domain Charter takes a strong stand against this development by claiming in the charter that:

  • Europeana belongs to the public and must represent the public interest.
  • The Public Domain is the material from which society creates cultural understanding and knowledge. Having a thriving Public Domain is essential to economic and social well-being.
  • Digitisation of Public Domain content does not create new rights over it. Works that are in the Public Domain in analogue form continue to be in the Public Domain once they have been digitised.

The Charter is created in support of the recent Public Domain Manifesto by COMMUNIA. You can share your view on the Public Domain and the Pubic Domain Charter on the Europeana Facebook group.

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