Publishers and authors to receive compensation for photocopied books in schools

The agreement will help regulate the irregular and illegal use of reprography and digital use of books

Education Minister Justyne Caruana presiding over the signing of the Education Exception Contract regulating irregular use of reprography and digital use of books
Education Minister Justyne Caruana presiding over the signing of the Education Exception Contract regulating irregular use of reprography and digital use of books

Publishers and authors will receive compensation to the tune of €100,000 a year for a 10% reprographic or digital use of each book published thanks to an Education Exception Contract regularising the reprography and digital use of Maltese books in public schools.

The agreement, signed by the Education Ministry and National Book Council, looks to regulate the irregular and illegal use of reprography and digital use of books, which incurs material damages to the book industry. This is an EU obligation which will be further consolidated once the Copyright Directive in the Digital Single Market  comes into effect next summer.

“Malta is the second last country to be doing this sort of agreement,” NBC chaiman Mark Camilleri said. “The concept of intellectual property rights is not as respected, but as a council we’re doing what we can to make sure this is reconciled.”

Camilleri commented that intellectual property rights need to be respected in order to safeguard publishing. “If intellectual property isn’t respected the industry won’t make any money – you’ll kill the market”.

Education Minister Justyne Caruana announced that the agreement will come into effect as of today. “We’ll see how it develops and then see how to better the situation,” she said.

The agreement will apply to all of Malta’s public and Church schools, but will not apply to private schools and the University of Malta as they are legally obliged to make separate arrangements with the book industry.

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