Information Society Council Calls for Fundamental Reform of the Copyright System and Large-Scale Use of the CC Licence

the eFinland Weblog

Helsinki, 28 February, 2006 — Finnish Information Society Council, chaired by Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen, proposes a fundamental reform of the copyright system in its recent report. The report criticises the current copyright system in Finland as being complex and inflexible. In order to promote shared use of knowledge, the Information Society Council proposes the large-scale use of the Creative Commons licence (CC) in the public sector.

According to the report Tulevaisuuden elinvoimainen Suomi (Robust Future Finland) argues that the copyright system is in need of fundamental reform in order to ensure that Finland meets its information society goals for 2010. The report proposes that the Ministry of Trade and Industry and the Ministry of Education should start preparing a large-scale reform, including a fundamental reassessment of the copyright system in light of recent information society developments. The preparation should adopt an industrial and information society policy approach rather than a cultural policy approach, the report recommends.

The report argues that current copyright legislation dates to a time when it mainly regulated the relations between individual content producers and publication channels. As we are currently moving toward a multichannel distribution system and creating new digital services, we increasingly encounter situations in which the inflexibility and complexity of the copyright system are obstacles to effective information dissemination and to the creation of commercially viable services.

Publicly Funded Educational Materials to Be Distributed on CC Licence Terms

The Information Society Council also proposes that the public sector should consistently adopt the CreativeCommons licence. For example, publicly funded educational materials or training material produced by civil servants should be disseminated under the CC license, which enables their widespread use.

The report recommends that the preparatory work for adopting the CC licence, including descriptions of operating modes, should be commissioned from the Helsinki Institute of Information Technology (Helsinki University of Technology and University of Helsinki), which co-ordinates the development of the CC-licence.

The Information Society Council's report Tulevaisuuden elinvoimainen Suomi will be available in English in May/June 2006.

The Information Society Council, chaired by the Prime Minister, is a negotiation body for steering the development of the information society and for coordinating cooperation between administration, organisations and business life.

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