U of T and Western make the right choice on Access Copyright

OTTAWA, Dec. 12, 2013 /CNW/ - The University of Toronto and Western University have joined the parade of universities terminating agreements with Access Copyright, a copyright licensing agency that charges fees to universities in exchange for a license to reproduce copyrighted works. In the past 18 months, 21 Canadian universities have terminated their agreements with Access Copyright.

"In light of amendments to the Copyright Act that expanded the definition of fair dealing, it makes no sense for any university to continue paying exorbitant Access Copyright fees," said Jessica McCormick, National Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. "More and more universities and colleges are opting to rely on fair dealing, open access publishing, and in-house licensing instead of Access Copyright's obsolete model."

Amendments to the Copyright Act have expanded the definition of fair dealing—the limited right to copy works without permission or payment when it is fair—to include "education" purposes and recent rulings of the Supreme Court have broadly interpreted fair dealing. Given these developments, the value of the Access Copyright service is questionable.

"This is a victory for students at U of T, at Western and across the country, who have been challenging Access Copyright agreements at post-secondary institutions for years," said McCormick.

The Canadian Federation of Students is Canada's largest student organisation, uniting more than one-half million students in all ten provinces. The Canadian Federation of Students and its predecessor organisations have represented students in Canada since 1927.

SOURCE: Canadian Federation of Students

For further information:

For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:
Jessica McCormick, National Chairperson, 613-232-7394

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