CRL and Partners Publish New e-Resources Model License

Chicago, Illinois – December 3, 2014. The Center for Research Libraries is pleased and proud to announce the major upgrade of an important resource for library investment in electronic resources.  The LIBLICENSE Project, started in 1997 at Yale University by Ann Okerson, who now serves as senior advisor at CRL, provides a rich source of information and guidance for libraries and other
institutions seeking to license digital resources for their faculty, students, and researchers.

LIBLICENSE has now released a newly revised model license, incorporating the best practices of the library profession and the best advice of legal and publishing professionals. The model license outlines the main provisions a good library e-resources content license should contain, highlighting as well key points for decisions and negotiations with publishers. The document is expected to support libraries’ efforts to serve their users and achieve the core mission of preserving intellectual heritage in the digital age by negotiating the best terms of use. The original LIBLICENSE model license, released in 2001, has supported long-term access and stewardship goals; the new revision will help librarians address a new generation of issues and challenges.

CRL President Bernard Reilly said of the new model, “CRL was glad to support this important work, work that will enable librarians everywhere to do the best possible job of representing the interests of researchers, in their dealings with providers of electronic resources.” Ann Okerson concurred and added, “The collaboration of colleagues from throughout North America and the support of ARL, CDL, CRKN, and NELLCO, has made possible a dramatic improvement in the quality and currency of the information we can provide. The benefits will be felt far and wide, and soon.”

Charles Henry, President of the Council on Library and Information Resources said, “LIBLICENSE and the new model license are vital components of the toolkit that librarians can bring to the table in assuring their users generous access to the highest quality digital resources. CLIR is pleased and encouraged to see this step forward.” Elliott Shore, Executive Director of the Association of
Research Libraries, added, “ARL’s commitment to making it possible for the users of our libraries to have the information they need, when they need it, and how they can use it best, convinced us of the importance of refreshing and carrying forward the work of this project. We are delighted to participate.”

The effort was made possible with funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. As with the initial 2001 version, the Council on Library and Information Resources again provided support and encouragement. New contributors to this significant, year-long effort included the Association of Research Libraries, the California Digital Library, the Canadian Research Knowledge Network, and the NELLCO Law Library Consortium, as well as the Emory University Libraries. The development team, without whom this new version would not have been possible, includes: Ivy Anderson (CDL); Julia Blixrud (ARL); Craig Olsvik (CRKN); Tracy Thompson (NELLCO); Christa Williford (CLIR); and Ann Okerson (CRL) as Convener. Extra acknowledgement goes to Lisa Macklin, MLS, JD, Director of the Scholarly Communications Office, Emory University Libraries, for her expert role in developing numerous versions of the document. We give special mention of the efforts of ARL’s Julia Blixrud, who passed away at the close of this process after a difficult illness. The team thanks also the dozens of individuals who offered comments on the draft in
progress. Every comment was studied by the team and served to improve the model license.

In early 2015, the Project expects to release an updated “Create Your Own License” software. Based on this new model license, the software is a total re-write of the previous version, which enjoyed a
healthy lifespan of over a decade. More information will be available upon release. The new model license is available at:
http://wp.crl.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/modellicense2014.pdf

For information contact:
Ann Okerson (aokerson@crl.edu)
Senior Advisor
Center for Research Libraries
6050 S. Kenwood Avenue
Chicago, IL 60627

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