Digital preservation of licensed content

There is a new (free!) resource on the LIBLICENSE website:

A 2022 review revealed that digital preservation language in many existing agreements is:

• Vague
• Unclear regarding the precise content and time depth preserved
• Unnecessarily restrictive in terms of access and/or use
• A conflation of long-term digital preservation and access with post-cancellation access
• Sometimes administratively burdensome

It is also difficult to verify compliance with the agreement language, and that the content is deposited and preserved properly.

A working group produced this paper to clarify the distinction between long-term preservation and post-cancellation access, recommends improved language to use in agreements, and offers guidance on how to negotiate the language into agreements.

Please may I thank each working group member for your time and thoughtful engagement throughout the last year – it has been a privilege to chair, and to learn from and with you all: Sara Bahnmaier (University of Michigan), Lorraine Estelle (EIFL), Evelyn Frangakis (Princeton Theological Seminary), Melanie Kowalski (CRL), Erik Limpitlaw (Stanford University), Steve Marks (University of Toronto), Tim Morton (University of Virginia), Ann Okerson (Liblicense Project), Rita Pinhasi (University of Vienna), Michelle Polchow (University of California Davis), Judy Russell (University of Florida), Mark Sandler (Novel Solutions), Daniël Steinmeier (Dutch Royal Library), Ben Taplin (Jisc), and Kate Wittenberg (Portico).

On behalf of the entire group, we hope you find this new resource useful. We would love to hear from you and learn from your experiences. We welcome any suggestions to inform the future refresh of this document.

With best wishes,

Dr. Alicia Wise
Executive Director