University Affairs is trying to put the best spin possible on a bad situation. "Only about 14 Canadian universities have announced publicly that they wouldn't be signing the model copyright licence with Access Copyright." Still, the institutions that have not signed represent about 40 percent of the student population. "We're concerned that 35 percent of the institutions are not covered," says Maureen Cavan, executive director of Access Copyright. She adds, "that represents a larger number... who do not have access to the Access Copyright repertoire of material." Quelle dommage!Of course, this misrepresents the fact that the students could access the same material by other means for much less (and often for free). It's interesting, though, to read why some universities actually agreed to the terms: "Several cited the large amount of copyrighted material for which they already hold digital licences." If they don't sign the new terms, they lose their existing collections - which (it seems to me) sets them up for even more brutal cost-pressure in the future.
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