On the 19th and 20th of March representatives from EUscreenXL’s content partners met at the Lithuanian Central State Archives (LCVA) in Vilnius with technical and research partners as well as Europeana to examine and address practical issues and opportunities relating to the supply, delivery, and re-use of content and metadata for the EUscreenXL project.
Considering the variety of special projects and areas involved in Europeana and the fact that most issues are influenced by legal issues, Europeana has decided to create a working group dedicated especially to IPR. The aim of this working group is to coordinate IPR related deliverables and activity across Europeana’s diverse range of activities. This is a new initiative at Europeana, and there is a hope that, by forming a cross-project coordination group, we will deliver better and more cohesive outcomes.
The first meeting took place in Copenhagen two weeks ago, with several IPR experts from different Europeana-related projects (Cloud, Space, Open-up, Sounds, Photography and EUscreenXL) chaired by Paul Keller (Kennisland) and Julia Fallon (Europeana).
During the first meeting we introduced our projects and discussed some issues in order to create working group plan. For instance, we feel that it is necessary to have a clear and transparent procedure for proposing new rights statements (you can find the current list here: Available Rights Statements). Info sharing is obviously useful for all of us, but we also decided to share relevant deliverables and found some questions we should elaborate during the next meeting. We’re looking forward to it!
EUscreen successfully aggregated tens of thousands of cultural heritage audiovisual materials from all across Europe. However, there are more archival films and videos out there, waiting to be found, aggregated and organised in a way that makes it easier for everyone to discover the continent’s rich cultural heritage through moving images.
If two cookies are better than one cookie, what is better than 500,000 aggregated cultural heritage videos? 1.000.000 aggregated cultural heritage A/V materials made findable and accessible through a single entry point all in one place (Europeana), showing the way life in Europe was and continues to be. That is the challenge EUscreenXL has set itself.
EUscreenXL strives to make this possible but needs you in order for this to work. Archives, broadcasters, universities, libraries: the consortium welcomes those with audiovisual collections online who want to contribute to this long-standing endeavor.
Join Our Network
Joining the EUscreenXL benefits multiple parties: your institution, your content and the general public. Here are some examples:
Help us overcome the fragmentation of Euorpean audiovisual cultural heritage content available online.
Have your content join the rich collection of European cultural heritage content available on Europeana, Europe’s online cultural hub.
Have your content be professionally contextualized by EUscreen’s network of academics and media professionals.
Become part of an interoperable portal which will increase your content’s visibility and accessibility.
Have your content’s metadata aligned to EBUcore (European broadcasting standard) and EDM (European cultural sector standard).
Have your institution become part of an expansive network of leaders and experts in the audiovisual cultural heritage sector.
Do any of these benefits strike your interest? Would you like to learn more? We would love to hear from you. Click on over to our Join the Network page or contact us at mailto:email@example.com.
We all know that good metadata is a love letter to the future – but what makes it good?
At Europeana a Task Force has been set up to look into the tricky question of what defines metadata quality and how it can be improved to ensure maximum discoverability and future re-use. EUscreen, together with selected representatives from archives, memory institutions and other domain aggregators like Europeana Sound, met up with the friendly Europeana Aggregation team at Europeana Foundation in The Hague on the 9th of April to advise on the best course of action.
Topics covered included a definition of quality criteria, factors preventing institutions from providing optimum data, and recommendations on best practice guidelines, tools and training to help providers improve and standardise the quality of their submissions. In this way, Europeana aims to offer better search result to users, enrich the data that is already accessible and thus ultimately to increase research opportunities for the digital heritage domain.
If this isn’t a love letter to the future, I don’t know what is.
Our colleagues from the Europeana Awareness project held their second Licensing Workshop in Luxemburg on the 13th and 14th of June. Réka Markovich went to present the efforts EUscreen has taken to bring a massive broadcast collection with different national copyright laws online. She represented the new EUscreenXL project, in which we’ll continue our research and approaches on providing access to audiovisual heritage.
Report by Réka Markovich from ELTE University, Hungary.
Europeana Awareness is a Best-Practice Network led by the Europeana Foundation. It’s been designed to publicize Europeana to users, policy makers, politicians and cultural heritage organizations in every Member State. The second Europeana Licensing workshop was part of research undertaken for the Europeana Awareness project by the Bibliothèque nationale de Luxembourg, Kennisland and the Institute for Information Law (IvIR). Their research focuses on possible international licensing models for digital heritage and the legal framework for cross-border licensing of copyright-protected works in Europe. In practice, this means that it explores the conditions under which works contained in the collections of cultural heritage institutions could be regulated on a cross-border basis in the context of Europeana.
Models for Cross-Border Licensing
The workshop aimed at gathering information to map the practice and implementation of the Orphan Works Directive and possible alternative contractual arrangements (such as those based on the Memorandum of Understanding on Out-of-Commerce Works). It complements a questionnaire to the European member states about the creation of an international database of Orphan Works. Member States will have to pass legislation implementing the Directive by October 2014. As far as the database is concerned, they will have to play the role of “interface” between beneficiary institutions (libraries etc) and the office for the harmonisation of the internal market (OHIM), an EU agency with responsibility in the area of IPR, based in Alicante, Spain. The focus of this process is to identify possible loopholes in the cross-border access and re-use of works that is caused by differing national arrangements regarding categories of works, beneficiaries, scope and conditions of use, etc. For those who’d like to get an idea of the wide variety of copyrights clearance regulations in different European countries, the Public Domain Calculator gives you a good idea.
Cross-border access and use depend not only on a clear legal framework, but also on effective data collection and rights management. Therefore the workshop’s first day focused on the practical implementation of data registries, data creation and data exchange processes between the relevant actors. It was interesting to see what kind of organizations work on copyright clearance: e.g. with facilitating rights information management (ARROW) or with developing building blocks for the expression and management of rights and licensing across all content and media types (Linked Content Coalition). While legal issues cannot be easily separated from more administrative issues, day two focused on legal interoperability issues of implementing alternative (contractual) mechanisms.
Rights for Audiovisual Works
Issues of intellectual property rights are crucial when providing access to audiovisual collections. As a part of legislation, copyright law still bears some territorial nature – while a Pan-European audiovisual archive touches upon cross-border legal issues. Some kind of harmonization would be necessary to ensure the possibility of publishing and providing access to our audiovisual heritage. The Memorandum of Understanding on Key Principles on the Digitization and Making Available of Out-of-Commerce Works is sector-specific: it covers books and learned journals only. A dialogue between stakeholders is the way forward to facilitate agreements for the digitization of European out-of-commerce cultural material in other sectors—e.g. on audiovisual works—as well.
EUscreenXL will provide Europeana with 1.000.000 metadata records giving access for online content held by European broadcasters and audiovisual archives and will publish 20.000 contextualized programmes on the EUscreen portal. As the audiovisual content aggregator for Europeana, all the work packages of EUscreenXL take their cue from Europeana’s working groups. In EUscreenXL we are also working on a strategic agenda for access to audio-visual heritage through Europeana. The task is a pan-European research effort. It covers seven topics closely related to the daily reality of audio-visual archives, one of which is intellectual property rights. This activity is essential for Europeana to reach out to the audio-visual domain and understand what needs to be put in place in order to maximize contributions to Europeana. It was therefor fascinating to hear about the legal issues-related activities of Europeana, to be in touch with the Europeana project working groups and the people behind them.
A good introduction to copyright issues for cultural heritage, with examples from the audiovisual domain, can be found in Dr. Paul Klimpel’s Copyright Law, Practice and Fiction. [PDF]
By Johan Oomen – technical director EUscreen and Europeana Network Officer – @johanoomen
Europeana has become the unifying entity that brings together collections from all domains: libraries, archives, audiovisual collections (both television and film) and museums. Alarmingly, Europeana’s future is under threat. In the next few weeks, Member States are expected to decide the EU’s budget for 2014-2020. The way the budget of the EU’s Connecting Europe Facility is allocated will determine how Europe’s rich heritage can be enjoyed, studied and repurposed. With this post, EUscreen would like to extend its full support to Europeana’s #AllezCulture campaign to secure EU funding after 2015.
The innovative hadron collider for the Cultural Sector
Europeana has evolved from a temporary project to a full network organisation. To date, it has successfully standardised and connected data from over 2,200 organisations, which cover all European countries and 29 European languages. An important, unifying asset for Europeana is that it serves as the innovative ‘hadron collider ‘ for Europe’s cultural sector. It does so by leading the movement towards open access, by harnessing the power of participatory culture and by implementing emerging IT standards in working systems. With a critical mass of content available online, the exploration of new applications by the creative industries are now taking shape. By making collections available online, interest is raised in both the public and commercial sectors. EUscreen for instance has already seen an increase of footage sale requests from the content that is made available through the portal.
EUscreen and Europeana: part of the same ecosystem
Without support from the European Union, EUscreen would not exist today. EUscreen and its sister projects such as the European Film Gateway have been granted financial support within a wider EU policy on providing unified access to Europe’s audiovisial heritage. Today, Europeana provides access to over 181.000 audiovisual items, a number to grow exponentially over the next years.
EUscreen and Europeana are connected in many ways; they are part of the same ecosystem. Not only in terms of technical standards to make unified access possible. The vision is, and has to be, much more ambitious than that. In an online context where sharing is the norm, it becomes almost a necessity for memory organisations to make their collections available online in order to retain and support community interest. Collections and their users now share the same information space. As a result, organisations rapidly need to adapt to maintain their relevance in this changing environment. We already see how, in the current economic climate, public libraries and public broadcasters are put under pressure to continuously demonstrate their added value, also in terms of their direct economic impact. This can be difficult to measure, also given the changing context in which these organisations find themselves in. Memory institutions need to receive the necessary support to forge their future missions and services, collaboratively. The Europeana Network will play a key role here, as it has broad support across memory organisations, has deep understanding of various stakeholders and also the critical mass to make necessary policy recommendations heard.
EUscreen’s support for #AllezCulture
Over the years, EUscreen has become the leading network of television collection holders with a united vision to share the wealth of their collections to a wide and diverse audience. With support from EBU, FIAT-IFTA, PrestoCentre, IASA and other key stakeholders, EUscreen is making this vision a reality each day. Currently, 29 archives from 25 countries are connected to EUscreen. EUscreen provides free and non-commercial access to Europe’s history as captured in moving images. This collection will continue to grow, and so will the services offered through the EUscreen portal. For instance, by further supporting multilingual access through subtitles, or expanding the material on the open access portal. This summer, the EUscreen Foundation will be established, providing the legal framework that will govern the EUscreen network as it expands well into the future.
Again, EUscreen and Europeana are part of the same ecosystem, aiming to:
Make Europe’s culture available for everyone. Through search interfaces, but also online exhibits, crowdsourcing campaigns and so on;
Support economic growth, by supporting re-use of content by the creative industries;
Connect Europe’s citizens. To understand the past and to appreciate cross-cultural differences and commonalities.
Europe has collectively invested over 1.2 billion euros in digitisation. Europeana is the only platform that brings this data together and offers it for unlimited use. We have just begun to unlock its potential. We, therefore, urge the EU to allocate sufficient funds in the ‘Connecting Europe Facility’ to allow the Europeana Ecosystem to further expand and live up to its ambitions vision.
We encourage all audiovisual archives to express their support. Capture the attention and imagination of the people who influence decisions on CEF funding – raise your voice and share the successes and value that you have helped create via Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and any other channels you can think of.
Try imagining all the world’s existing audiovisual material: all the films ever made, plus the television footage ever shot, plus all the sounds once recorded – add the scientific and military observations and home videos, the (super) 8 mm recordings, the YouTube generation’s creations. Then, try to visualise not the kilometers of celluloid or optical disks or hours and lifetimes it would take to see it all, but what the possible value of all those sounds and images would be.
Do they indeed, as the author of the just released report Assessing the Audiovisual Archive Market, Peter B. Kaufman, proposes, form a sort of crude oil – ready to be refined, reassembled and made into a new creative product?
In the same way that oil, pumped from the ground, is refined and then used to fuel transportation and industry, or iron, mined from the ground, is smelted into steel and used in construction, so audiovisual materials mined from the archives form part of the backbone of information, com- munication, and our creative knowledge economy, worldwide.
Assessing the Audiovisual Archive Market
Assessing the Audiovisual Archive Market: Models and Approaches for Audiovisual Content Exploitation was commissioned by PrestoCentre, the international competence centre for digital audiovisual preservation. It explores the ways that a audiovisual archives have been “examining, appreciating, and even embracing business and commercial interactions in the digital age”. The report takes a look back at 124 years of audiovisual archiving and how the challenge of preserving moving images and sounds has reached increasing levels of complexity.
This increased complexity, not in the least caused by the advent of digital production and storage methods, leads to a mirrored exchange between the access and preservation tasks of the contemporary archive: twin missions, as Kaufman calls them, that “twist around each other like the double helix of a modern memory institution’s DNA.” The paper investigates the forms and methods audiovisual archives have been approaching to fund this double mission and how they have shifted some of their attention towards possible cooperation with businesses and even taken advantage of existing commercial opportunities.
new opportunities for cultural heritage institutions to develop business models, revenue streams, and business knowledge — and in the process gain an even greater appreciation for the role they play in media, society, and our economies today — abound. This paper, focusing as it does on such opportunities, may provide activists in the field with inspiration and support.
In order to define the value of an audiovisual collection, one needs to get a clear idea about the costs involved – by mouth of one of the interviewees, the report states that “use has begun to define value”. Inversely, an item that is not well preserved, cannot be found and thus not used by anyone, ever again. The paper stresses the importance of access as a form of open access: the value that lies in use, sharing, reuse can only be realised when unrestricted online access allows participant from different online realms can use web tools to popularise and contextualise the assets. The paper intends to suggest that in the double helix between preservation and access, “support for one is support for both”.
It also underlines the need for the audiovisual archiving field that in dealing with the multi-billion dollar business partners who are currently so important for finding, exploring, discovering and buying media on the web, the field of archives and museums needs to be well aware of its value and importance, as well al the sensitivities we share and the experiences we’ve had.
No agent has been retained to represent the interests of libraries, archives, and museums, in the way an author or musician might retain one. No lawyers have been hired to pore over the body of agreements to date and highlight best practices for the community. No working group focused exclusively on improving public-private partnerships has been assembled and charged with a mission and a deadline. If the commercial sector is investing hundreds of millions of Euros, and a hundred billion are needed, we had better get started.
The report offers 7 Recommendations and proposes the development of four new tools for a smarter (re-)use of audiovisual archival content. The recommendations are:
Audiovisual archives should consider themselves part and parcel of the knowledge economy.
Audiovisual archives should recognize that multibillion-dollar businesses are growing based on materials they curate; and as a result their institutions deserve to participate in the revenue these materials are generating, in the knowhow that they are contributing, and in other direct and indirect benefits these materials are making to the world.
Audiovisual archives more than anything need something approximat ing an old-fashioned guild, where collective knowledge can come to rest, and where business savvy from attorneys, dealmakers, and others might be fielded and centralized.
The field needs to hire, in effect, an advocate — perhaps a sanhedrin of wise men and women who can look after its collective interest and help it argue on its own behalf and on behalf of the public sector.
When approaching business relationships, audiovisual archives should consider the arrangements from the perspective of their commercial partners, recognizing that the strongest players in the audiovisual marketplace are in the business now for the long term, making strategic rather than tactical investments in the sector.
Archives should recognize in particular the value of their building comprehensive metadata resources and optimizing their audiovisual resources for search and discovery.
In the audiovisual archive world, archives have been dealt a strong hand. They need to recognize that audiovisual material now and over time will be the most sought- after assets to monetize.