I won't pay to read!
European campaign against paying for library loans
From an initiative of Cologno Monzese Library
MANIFESTO IN DEFENCE OF FREE LIBRARY LOANS
Local authority libraries, museums, archives, newspaper libraries, audiolibraries and film libraries and those belonging to non-profit institutions of collective interest of a cultural, scientific or educative nature, or to other recognised educational institutions
1. GUARANTEE the public free, unlimited access to learning, knowledge and information.
1. PERFORM an important service in the development and support of a democratic society, facilitating access to a vast and broad range of thought, ideas and opinions.
3. HELP instill and develop reading habits, especially amongst children and young people.
4. PERFORM fundamental work in the development of educative systems, providing the instruments necessary for acquiring knowledge at each and every stage of development.
5. PROVIDE indispensable support for research carried out in all types of institution, making available to those who need them the tools and aids necessary for the progress of their work.
6. ACT as a showcase of existing cultural production, comprising amongst their collections the work of intellectuals, scientists and artists, made available to the public. These people benefit thus from the use of a free channel of publicity and diffusion of their ideas.
7. ASSURE diffusion, conservation and accessibility of all types of work, overcoming problems regarding individuals' financial situations, limited distribution and demands of the market.
8. OFFER their services always respecting the rights of the author, acting, moreover, as a channel to make this issue more widespread amongst readers, encouraging them to observe respect in their use of published materials and services.
9. HAVE no lucrative, economic or commercial aims, direct or indirect, seeking only to benefit from the cultural, educational and professional development of those to whom they provide the mentioned services, thus pursuing the improvement of educative activities and competitiveness in society as a whole.
10. BELONG to each and all, since they are funded by money provided by the public through taxes.
Thus we present our conviction upon the necessity to:
1. GUARANTEE a suitable balance between the interests of authors, editors and of society in general by means of legislation relating to the rights of the author.
2. VOUCHSAFE society's cultural interests, since these progress and develop through the promotion of research and free access to published materials. This and nothing else represents the basis of the law regulating the rights of the author.
3. MAINTAIN current limits on library lending, and that of other institutions, as created by article 69 of 22nd April 1941 no. 633 and subsequent amendments, which acts as an efficient tool for a policy of promotion of knowledge and reading throughout Italy, in complete accord with that set up by directive 92/100/CEE on lending services.
4. INSIST upon the value of lending services that the above-mentioned institutions offer, since it is of benefit to those who hold the rights of the author as readers and writers. Lending services are an indispensable tool for creating new readers and, thus, a market for books and other such materials.
5. HIGHLIGHT the importance of lending services that the said institutions offer, as indispensable instruments in the support of education and research.
6. INSIST upon highlighting the importance of the investment that local authorities make in the acquisition of funds for these types of service that are of direct benefit to authors and the editorial sector in general given that libraries are their most significant clients. This investment also represents society's explicit recognition of the importance of the contribution of authors and editors to cultural development.
7. . RECOGNISE that for certain materials, the acquisitions made by these institutions are indispensable in order to guarantee their publication and circulation, given the narrow market of some items.
8. AVOID all types of obstacle towards public lending services since they would be to the detriment of the objectives pursued: to benefit and facilitate progress in society.
Given all this here expounded, we declare ourselves OPPOSED to the possibility that lending to the public operated by libraries and other institutions, that currently enjoy special exceptions according to laws regarding the rights of the author, be subject to payment; moreover we exhort public institutions, and primarily the government, to defend lending in libraries as characterised by current legislation regarding the rights of the author.
Drawn up by Gruppo Biblioteche e Proprietà Intellettuale (BPI) di FESABID, (Spanish Association for Archives , Libraries, Documentation and Museums) together with other professional areas of the sector.
Adapted to the situation in Italy by Marco Mirandola, expert in the rights of the author and member of BPI, Pietro Tumminello of Bibl'aria, Annalisa Cichella and Luca Ferrieri, Biblioteca Civica di Cologno Monzese (Non pago di leggere campaign).