Universities Push Back Against Access Copyright Lawsuit

Stuart Woods | Quill & Quire | April 18, 2013

Students, educators, and librarians have come out strongly in opposition to the Access Copyright lawsuit launched earlier this month against York University.

The lawsuit seeks damages for the alleged misuse of copyright-protected works by educators at York, which opted out of Access Copyright’s collective licence in September 2011. (Q&Q reported on Access Copyright’s rationale last week.) In response, organizations representing the educational sector have accused Access Copyright of using bully tactics to force post-secondary institutions into purchasing a blanket copyright licence they say is no longer relevant.

In a press release, the Canadian Federation of Students called Access Copyright’s business model “obsolete” and “archaic.” The Canadian Association of University Teachers, which represents staff members at more than 120 universities, described the lawsuit as “hopeless.”