White Paper:
US Law and International
Interlibrary Loan
Brandon Butler, Director of Public Policy Initiatives,
Association of Research Libraries
Kenneth D. Crews, Director, Copyright Advisory Office,
Columbia University Libraries
Donna Ferullo, Director of the University Copyright Office,
Associate Professor of Library Science, Purdue University Libraries
Kevin L. Smith, Director of Scholarly Communications,
Duke University Libraries
Introduction
Vparticularly
arious recent events have raised questions about the proper scope
of interlibrary loan (ILL) arrangements with non-US institutions,
the ability of a library to send copies of materials to non-
US libraries. We believe that US copyright law supports the ability of domestic
libraries to participate in ILL arrangements and to send copies of some copy-
righted works to foreign libraries, provided the libraries meet the requirements
of the law. Although the law is not necessarily explicit about the conditions for
sending copies of works through ILL, a few simple steps taken by libraries
should provide greater assurance that the arrangements are serving the needs
of libraries, researchers, and copyright owners.
Relevant Legal Provisions
Participation in ILL arrangements is a well-established practice in libraries in
many countries. US copyright law allows libraries to make and distribute copies
of copyrighted works in connection with ILL arrangements under Section 108
(Reproductions by Libraries and Archives)1 and Section 107 (Fair Use). License
agreements may constrict or augment the rights of libraries to share materials as
part of ILL arrangements. Nevertheless, Section 108 is a leading legal support
for the reproduction and distribution of copyrighted works in ILL.
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JUNE 2011 RESEARCH LIBRARY ISSUES: A QUARTERLY REPORT FROM ARL, CNI, AND SPARC