Sara R. Benson

Keep Copyright in the Library

May 1, 2017

The Copyright Office’s future has sparked debate and controversy, specifically regarding the best location for the office. As librarians, we must seize this opportunity to advocate in favor of keeping the office within the Library of Congress (LC) and not, as some lawmakers would have it, as an independent agency under their purview. The framers of … Continue reading Keep Copyright in the Library


Attendees make one-page zines with open source materials at MozFest, October 28–29 in London.

MozFest 2016: Comics, Zines, and Open Images

November 7, 2016

I had spent the week leading up to the conference with my colleagues Nate Hill (executive director, Metropolitan New York Library Council) and Matthew Kopel (research and development librarian, Central New York Library Resources Council) preparing our remarks on library, archive, and museum contributions to open image collections, the various options for Creative Commons licenses, and … Continue reading MozFest 2016: Comics, Zines, and Open Images




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Internet Policy Task Force Notes Library Copyright Concerns

February 5, 2016

The task force consists of Commerce representatives from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, the Patent and Trademark Office, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the International Trade Administration. Formed in 2010 to “conduct a comprehensive review of the nexus between privacy policy, copyright, global free flow of information, cybersecurity, and innovation in … Continue reading Internet Policy Task Force Notes Library Copyright Concerns


Re:Create Coalition logo

I’m Bullish about Copyright Policy for Libraries and I’m Not Crazy

November 16, 2015

The stimulus for this piece, however, is the copyright policy conference on November 17 hosted by the Re:Create Coalition. You may recall that the American Library Association (ALA) is a founding member of this new coalition that was born in spring 2015, which includes a range of important, influential, and ideologically diverse players such as the Consumer Technology … Continue reading I’m Bullish about Copyright Policy for Libraries and I’m Not Crazy


Films offered by Digitalia Film Library (left, center) and India for Everyone (right).

Libraries Go to the Movies

September 22, 2015

Digitalia Film Library The Digitalia Film Library, a division of Spanish-language e-content provider Digitalia Publishing, allows libraries to bring the world of cinema to their patrons. Digitalia offers contemporary and classic fiction and nonfiction films, documentary programming, animation, and television shows from Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, France, Mexico, Spain, and the US that can be accessed … Continue reading Libraries Go to the Movies


Charlie Chaplin in The Gold Rush.

Screening Legally

February 16, 2015

Film programming can seem more complicated than other kinds of programming. How do you choose films to show? What equipment should you use? How do you market your programs? Where do you begin? The most challenging part—but in many ways the most important—is to make sure you are in compliance with the law relating to … Continue reading Screening Legally


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E-Content and First Sale

July 14, 2014

Music is the best market for forecasting potential trends. We can confidently assume that the last physical format for music, the CD, is in its twilight stage—soon to be replaced entirely by digital formats and niche markets like LPs. Starting in the late 1990s, the music industry experienced a downward sales curve that continued until … Continue reading E-Content and First Sale


How the Marrakesh Treaty Opens Vistas for Print-Disabled Readers

September 10, 2013

As the first treaty devoted to copyright exceptions, the June 28, 2013, agreement represents a significant development in international copyright law. (The 1886 Berne Convention contains exceptions for quotations, illustration in teaching, and news reporting.) ALA worked closely with the US delegation throughout the negotiating process. Through the Library Copyright Alliance, ALA’s views were represented … Continue reading How the Marrakesh Treaty Opens Vistas for Print-Disabled Readers