1709 Blog: for all the copyright community

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Authors Alliance Launch

If there are any 1709 readers in the San Francisco Bay Area today, I highly recommend attending the launch of the Authors Alliance.

Authors Alliance Logo
A fundamental reason for becoming an author is the desire that other people consume and enjoy your work. Unfortunately, increasingly authors face legal and practical barriers that reduce their ability to reach a large audience. Authors may find their works are out of print, are un-digitized, and subject to copyrights that were signed away many years ago. Likewise, some authors may feel conflicted about whether to publish in outlets that maximize public access to their works or outlets that maximize peer-review and prestige.

The Authors Alliance is a non-profit organization that hopes to reduce these barriers and ensure that works of authorship are disseminated broadly. Hence the organization’s slogan is: “Promoting authorship for the public good by supporting authors who write to be read”. To do this, the organization will provide “information and tools designed to help authors manage key legal, technological and institutional aspects of the dissemination of works of authorship in the digital age”. In particular, the Alliance’s efforts will focus on ensuring the digitization of works; advising authors who wish to make their works publicly available and reusable; supporting journals, libraries, and archives that help readers discover authors; and advocating that authors are properly credited and attributed for their works. Full details can be found at the organization’s website.

Inside the beautiful former Christian Science Church 
that now homes the Internet Archive. 
The Alliance is also not to be confused with the Authors Guild. Authors Guild board member, T.J. Stiles, has already criticized the Alliance’s mission for trying to reduce copyright protections and limit remedies for copyright infringement.

The official launch is taking place at the Internet Archive in San Francisco on Wednesday May 21 from 6.30pm to 9pm. It is expected that a host of copyright reform proposals will be announced. For those who can attend in person, reservations can be made here. For everyone else, the launch will be broadcast live here from 7.15pm PT.

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