NLW Digitisation Proposals
Below is a letter that appeared in the Western Mail on 24 October 2007, signed by writers, adding further weight to the debate instigated by the (then) Academi, representing members of Yr Academi Gymreig / The Welsh Academy.
SIR – The National Library of Wales is currently digitising 90 Welsh periodicals and magazines. This project, Welsh Journals Online, aims to provide “free, online, searchable access” to complete runs of such titles as Barddas and Poetry Wales.
Set up by librarians and academics, the project does not seem to have consulted creative and professional writers or the bodies that represent them.
The project is receiving more than £840,000 in public funding. The Library, though, has not allocated any money for the people who wrote the articles, reviews, stories and poems that make up the magazines. Instead, it hopes that rights holders will allow their material to be used for free.
Writing is work. Professional writers are paid both for their work and for its re-use. In not making provision for the payment of copyright holders, the project is seriously flawed. Until this matter is addressed, writers who want to keep Welsh writing on a professional basis will not allow the National Library of Wales to digitise their work. They include:
GARETH MILES |
DEBORAH KAY DAVIES
RICHARD MARGGRAF TURLEY
MARIO UMBERTO FIORILLO
SALLY ROBERTS JONES
GWYDION THOMAS (R S Thomas estate)
WIL OWEN ROBERTS
HARRI PRITCHARD JONES
IOAN M. WILLIAMS
JOHN POWELL WARD
MICHAEL ARNOLD WILLIAMS
DAVID LLOYD (USA)
JOHN IDRIS JONES
To add your name to this list in support of payment for writers, please email Oliver Reynolds: firstname.lastname@example.org