Council agrees on a negotiating mandate on the Data Governance Act

“Both the EP and Council texts contain amendments concerning the role of Open Access Common resources. In response to the initial DGA consultation, we submitted feedback to the Commission where we highlighted the fundamental role played by these resources in the overall data ecosystem. To safeguard this key function, it is important that Open Access Commons resources are not negatively affected by the DGA.

The Parliament’s text contains an addition in recital 37a stipulating that the provisions established by the DGA are without prejudice to the ability of non-profit organizations to make data and content available to the public under open licenses. This amendment would clearly signal that Open Access Common resources fall outside the scope of the DGA. As such, it would recognize their key role in today’s digital ecosystem.

The Council text includes a new definition of data intermediaries stipulating that only for-profit services fall into this category. If included in the final compromise, this addition would ensure that existing Open Access Resources, like Wikipedia or Europeana – which are generally recognized as not-for-profit – are not subject to the requirements that the DGA will impose on intermediaries.

Taken together, these two modifications would ensure that Open Access Commons resources are not subject to additional requirements that could endanger their modus operandi. To safeguard their position in the DGA and increase legal clarity, both Council’s and Parliament’s contributions therefore need to be included in the final text….”

Consultation on a ‘Declaration of Digital Principles’ | Europeana Pro

“In this context, the Europeana Foundation, Network Association and Aggregators’ Forum, collectively representing the Europeana Initiative, strongly support a rights-based, people-centred approach to the concept of digital citizenship and the development of principles that promote a more equitable and democratic digital environment in which

basic liberties and rights are protected online, 

sovereignty of data is protected,

public institutions are empowered to function in the public interest, and 

people are able to participate more fully in the creation, functioning and potential of their digital environment.  …

The Europeana Initiative recognises the relevance and importance of these principles through its work with the cultural heritage sector, and we believe that we have useful insights to share on them. However we believe that a fundamental principle is missing – that of universal access to cultural heritage online. …

Europeana’s focus is on supporting the cultural heritage sector in its digital transformation  because access to cultural heritage is vital to humankind – to our knowledge and understanding of who we are, where we’ve come from and what we can become. Democratising access to cultural heritage online, in ways that support inclusivity, innovation, creativity, education and knowledge sharing, is at the heart of Europeana’s purpose….

We work with Europe’s cultural heritage institutions to ensure that digital cultural heritage is shared in formats and of a quality which allows use and reuse by researchers and educators, creatives and innovators, and all citizens. Our work promotes the use of digital technology that makes cultural heritage online accessible, traceable and trustworthy, which in turn means people can explore it, use it, be inspired by it and learn from it with confidence. It contributes to an open, knowledgeable and creative society….”

 

Europeana Collections

“At Europeana we work with thousands of European archives, libraries and museums to share cultural heritage for enjoyment, education and research.

Europeana Collections provides access to over 50 million digitised items – books, music, artworks and more – with sophisticated search and filter tools to help you find what you’re looking for.

Our dedicated thematic collections on art, fashion, music, photography and World War I contain galleries, blogs and exhibitions to inform and inspire.

To find out how cultural material gets from Europe’s institutions into Europeana, and the activities and challenges we’re working on right now, you can go behind the scenes on our sister site, Europeana Pro …”

Discover inspiring European cultural heritage | Europeana

“Europeana works with thousands of European archives, libraries and museums to share cultural heritage for enjoyment, education and research.

This website gives you access to millions of books, music, artworks and more – with sophisticated search and filter tools to help you find what you’re looking for. Register for a Europeana account today so that you can save liked items and create your own galleries.

Our online exhibitions, galleries and blogs aim to inform and inspire. Sign up to our monthly newsletter so you never miss out on our editorial highlights and latest news.

To find out about Europeana’s technical infrastructure, and how Europeana empowers the cultural heritage sector in its digital transformation, visit our sister site for professionals, Europeana Pro. …”

Submit your proposal for Europeana 2021 | Europeana Pro

“We are delighted to announce the launch of our call for proposals for Europeana 2021! Like last year, 70% of the conference programme will be open to professionals working in and around the cultural heritage sector to share expertise, knowledge and experience in varied sessions. Read on to find out about our call and how you can take part in one of the leading events of the year for those who work in, with and around digital cultural heritage in Europe….”

Europeana Digital Spring Programme: Not in Public Ownership, but Available for Public Use | Europeana Pro

“In this session, Bernadine Brocker Wieder holds a roundtable discussion on how to keep digital public access to works removed from museum collections. Bernadine proposes two methods for discussion on how digital technology can ensure that works are publicly available even after the gavel comes down at an auction. …”

Evaluating the Orphan Works Directive | Europeana Pro

“Throughout the survey, we noted that with two relatively overlapping systems in place, cultural heritage professionals are likely to use the one that provides the best solution, with the other one remaining mostly unused. We therefore recommended considering retracting the Orphan Works Directive. We also noted its clear flaws so that the same mistakes would not be repeated again. 

We noted the following: 

The diligent search for rights holders is problematic, with the sources it is mandatory to consult often irrelevant and difficult to access. Pertinent sources are sometimes not included.

The time and resources that an institution needs to dedicate to conducting a diligent search present challenges, particularly as after completing this process there is still no full guarantee that the institution will always be able to use the work lawfully. 

The very limited scope of the Directive in different types of works is a clear downside; including embedded works (for example, the multiple works contained in a scrapbook) in those whose rights holders have to be searched for makes the determination extremely time-consuming and almost impossible.  

The Directive does not provide a sufficient level of clarity regarding the compensation that rights holders can claim; this lack of clarity has strongly disincentivised cultural heritage professionals from relying on this scheme. 

The EUIPO Orphan Works database can be cumbersome when working with large datasets and is not sufficiently interoperable with the repositories of cultural heritage institutions. 

Having two overlapping schemes is likely to raise a lot of uncertainties for cultural heritage professionals, for instance when trying to assess which of the two options to rely on. The out of commerce works provisions in the Copyright in the Digital Single Market Directive, while tackling the same challenges, offer much better solutions and less cumbersome conditions, perhaps to a large extent given the lessons learned from the Orphan Works Directive, and we are hopeful that they will deliver their promise. …”

Public Domain and misuse: some thoughts – Pagode

“An example of this, that particularly catched the attention of PAGODE – Europeana China because it relates to a Chinese cultural heritage item, has recently come to the stage: a beautiful image of a Chinese embroidered cloth (a so-called rank-badge) depicting a leopard, in PD from the Metropolitan Museum of Arts, was recently used to illustrate the cover page of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Journal, titled “Emerging infectious diseases”.

The Journal and CDC were immediately flooded with expressions of outrage and concern of many from the Asian-American community and beyond, at the inappropriate use of a Chinese work of art on the cover and tweet-posting of a journal issue devoted to scholarly articles on COVID-19 and other respiratory infections.

The power of imaging should not be underestimated, as the choice of this image in such a context may suggest an emphasis on animals in China as carriers of the disease, resulting in an unvoluntary but certainly irresponsible example of using a PD digital item. The sensitivity about associating the COVID-19 crisis straightforward with China is clearly understandable, especially in America in this moment of xenophobia concerns and protests; but the explaination of CDC cuts short, by stating this is all a misunderstanding, and simply confirming that the image was chosen just for decorative purposes, being a striking piece of art – as indeed it is. At the moment, no reaction is known from the Metropolitan Museum of Arts as the content holder of the misused digital image.

The entire story is deepened in an interesting article by Hyperallergic magazine….”

Building capacity for digital transformation: how our workshops support the cultural heritage sector | Europeana Pro

“Europeana’s ‘Digital Transformation in the time of COVID-19’ workshops began this week, bringing together thought leaders in the cultural heritage sector for sense-making, scaling-up and capacity building. With the workshops underway, we share how they contribute to Europeana’s strategic priorities to build capacity for the sector and how you can follow and benefit from the work they undertake….”

Europeana Photography unlocks a vast archive of historical photography – Europeana Professional

“Europeana Photography is now launching as the outcome of a collaboration between Europeana and PHOTOCONSORTIUM, the International Consortium for Photographic Heritage. Giving access to a vast archive of historical images, it’s a treasure trove of carefully selected pictures from the first 100 years of photography. The latest thematic collection on the Europeana platform, Europeana Photography presents high-quality images and compelling stories from Europe’s most astonishing historical picture collections. Just be warned: once you’ve stepped into our time capsule, you’ll never want to leave!”

Opening up the Natural History Heritage for Europeana

“Countless natural history treasures are deposited in museums across the world, many hidden away beyond easy access. The OpenUp! project creates a free access to these resources, offering over one million items belonging to the world’s biodiversity heritage. The objects made available through OpenUp! consist of high quality images, videos and sounds, as well as natural history artworks and specimens, and also include many items previously inaccessible to visitors. Information provided through OpenUp! is checked by scientists and made available through the Europeana portal at www.europeana.eu….”