What is the Marrakesh Treaty?
If you’re reading this blog post, chances are that most of you are familiar with the CLA Higher Education Licence. But, how much do you know about the Marrakesh Treaty and how does this treaty affect your CLA HE Licence?
The Marrakesh Treaty, also known as the “Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled”, was created with the aim of making published content more accessible to people with disabilities. It was originally adopted in Marrakesh, Morocco in June 2013.
It requires ratified countries to do two things:
- Provide a copyright exception to allow print disabled people, or organisations supporting them, to make an accessible copy of published material.
- Permit the international exchange of these accessible copies for the benefit of persons with print disabilities in other countries.
In June 2016, the Treaty entered into force after it was ratified by a twentieth country. In September 2017 the European Union published a Directive and Regulation for all member states to implement the Marrakesh Treaty into law by 11 October 2018. This was transposed into UK law on this date in the Copyright and Related Rights (Marrakesh Treaty etc.) (Amendment) Regulations 2018.
How does it affect the CLA Higher Education Licence?
Before the Regulations became law in October 2018, the Accessible Copy permissions in the CLA Higher Education Licence reflected the exceptions in the UK’s Copyright, Designs and Patents Act (1988). The exceptions applied only to situations where accessible copies could not be obtained under reasonable commercial terms, i.e. if an accessible version of the work was available from the rightsholder. The Regulations remove these restrictions as required by the Directive. We are now planning to update the HE Licence Terms and Conditions to remove the clause which mirrors the commercial availability exception (clause 9.2.2) in line with the Regulations. This change will be implemented for the start of the new academic year in August 2019.
This means that our Licensees can continue to make a single accessible copy of part or the whole of any work within licensed material for the exclusive use of a person with a print disability or someone acting on their behalf, on the following conditions:
- the Licensee has lawful possession or use of the work and continues to have such access for as long as the accessible copy is held
- the copy includes a statement that the accessible copy was made under the CLA Licence for personal use of a person with a disability and that it may not be further copied
- the Licensee may only charge for the supply of an Accessible Copy an amount that does not exceed the cost of making and supplying the copy
- the Licensee attaches sufficient acknowledgement to the copyright owner to the copy
Accessible formats include: large print for people with low vision, Braille for people with total loss of vision and audio information for both categories.
You can find out more about the Accessible Copy exceptions in Copyright Law in our recent blog post.
If you have any questions regarding your HE Licence, please get in touch.
More information on the Marrakesh Treaty
World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO): Summary of the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Persons Who Are Blind, Visually Impaired, or Otherwise Print Disabled (MVT) (2013)
International Publishers Association (IPA): IPA Guide to the Marrakesh Treaty
World Blind Union: The Treaty of Marrakesh explained