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EBLIDA Newsletter
Issue No. 1. January 2019

The President’s Editorial

Ton van Vlimmeren, President, EBLIDA
Dear colleagues,
Dear friends,
I hope you celebrated the start of 2019 in good spirits with family and friends.
The new year is traditionally an opportunity to plan and set resolutions for the forthcoming 12 months. The current circumstances for Libraries and Library Associations are quite challenging, but no matter what the circumstances are, we must not lose sight of our priorities.

We will focus very much on the EBLIDA strategy at the next EC meeting in Naples, Italy. (Our new Director, Giueseppe Vitiello, has written an article on that further down. Please take a look!)
It’s important for us to use our time wisely and move forward, look for new opportunities to embrace new alliances that will be created as well as strengthening alliances with old friends.
That will only be possible with your continued support and dedication.

I’m sure by working together, keeping focussed on our priorities and putting our Member’s interest at the heart of everything we do we can realise our ambitions.
I am confident that we all are in the right "business" - as Neil Gaiman said "Libraries really are the gates to the future" - the "business", that power the future.

This year’s Annual Conference (Dublin, on the 24th and 25th of June) seeks to highlight "Open Libraries".  An update is that we have now made the website public, although many areas are still under construction. Next month, there will be a lot more information available for you, and  online registration will be available as from 1st of February 2019. Watch this space!

And now, on behalf of the EBLIDA Executive Board and EBLIDA team, I would like to wish all a wonderful and a rewarding year and enjoy reading!

Yours sincerely,

Ton van Vlimmeren
EBLIDA President  


Copyright week 2019

Copyright week
The 2019 Copyright Week, coordinated by C4C Signatory EFF, will take place from 14 to 18 January.

If you would like to participate, please contact EFF at
More information is available at 

Copyright Week 2019 is supported by a number of organisations including the American Library Association (ALA), the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), Copyright for Creativity (C4C), Creative Commons and the Wikimedia Foundation.

Implementing the Marrakesh Directive - Commission means business

By Barbara Stratton
Chair, EBLIDA Expert Group on Information Law
10 January 2019

Late last year IPKat  (followed by TechDirt) reported that The EU Commission launched proceedings last November against 17 Member States alleging they had infringed the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union by not correctly implementing  Directive EU 2017/1564 implementing the Marrakesh Treaty 2013.

The countries in the Commission’s sights are Belgium, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia and the UK.
Some of those put on the naughty step, including the UK and France, had transposed the Directive by its deadline of 11 October 2018 - the UK, which already had some of the necessary legislation in place since 2014, slid onto the touchline with the remaining legislation the same day. We understand that Croatia, Latvia and probably also Finland achieved a late transposition in November and December last year. IFLA is conducting an overview of the state of play with the implementation of Marrakesh related legislation, so please be sure to keep Ariadna Matas updated regularly.
It is still a mystery why the Commission has apparently taken this action as no further information has emerged. It could be because some Member States were or still are late, or that others had not fully implemented the mandatory elements of the Directive, or indeed because the Commission thinks their implementation went too far beyond the Directive to the extent that rightholders may suffer harm. Or it could be something minor, for example the UK has since confirmed that in its case it was for not yet having notified the Commission of its implementation. It remains to be seen which cases will actually be taken to court.
A reminder for readers in those Member States that have not yet completed their transpositions - in 2017 EBLIDA and IFLA jointly published Implementing the Marrakesh Treaty in Europe - A Guide available here and here. For those who now have legislation in place, last August EIFL and IFLA launched Getting Started: implementing the Marrakesh Treaty for persons with print disabilities - A practical guide for librarians downloadable here and here, which every librarian should read, mark, learn and inwardly digest!

Game-based Approaches in Information Literacy Training

A book by Marina Encheva

A book by Marina Encheva
A book by Marina Encheva Ph.D., Assistant Professor at the University of Library Studies and Information Technologies (ULSIT), Department of Library Studies in Bulgaria and member of EBLIDA Executive Committee was published: “Game-based Approaches in Information Literacy Training”.
The monograph explores the applicability of game-based learning in academic and library courses in information literacy, as well as its potential to increase students' motivation and improve the learning outcomes.
The pedagogical theories of active learning and gamе-based learning have been analyzed and contemporary theories, frameworks and standards for information literacy in Europe and the world have been examined.
Good practices and experience of libraries and universities in the information literacy training through games are also presented as the games are divided into different categories. The possibilities of adapting and integrating games into an e-learning model that will be used for self-directed and peer learning, and for assignments within the curriculum, depending on the level of students' competencies, are considered.

The book is designed for teachers from higher educational institutions, librarians from academic libraries, researchers and university students.


EBLIDA Executive Committee meeting in Naples, 4 March 2019

by Giuseppe Vitiello
The National Library of Naples
The next EBLIDA Executive Committee meeting will take place in Naples, in the shadow of Vesuvius. People living under a volcano experience living with a constant sense of urgency. They also understand how destruction may be creative. It is not by chance that volcanic lands are fertile in the long-term producing rich crops.

It is with this spirit that the EBLIDA Executive Committee will meet in Naples. Items on the agenda include reports from working groups, finances, as well as the Annual Council and EBLIDA-NAPLE Conference Programme. The bulk of the discussion, however, will be devoted to the new EBLIDA Strategic Plan.

The previous EBLIDA Strategic Plan had a three-year scope, was short and open to many perspectives. There was a logic to it. The information environment in which EBLIDA operates is so dynamic, that setting targets engraved in stone, to be valid for three years, may be unrealistic and probably  counterproductive. The new EBLIDA Strategic Plan will have to find the right balance between flexibility and projectuality. Intermediate solutions will have to be found which allow the Executive Committee to re-adjust objectives according to changing scenarios.

Regarding the content of the Strategic Plan, the discussion is on-going. It also depends on the alliances EBLIDA can make and the funding it may raise. No matter the environment, the goal is clear: EBLIDA needs to build up a clear identity based on few and well defined targets, to raise the consensus of its members around these objectives and to gain visibility, in and out of the library and information world, in recognition of the work it will be able to develop.

Without a doubt, the main ingredient of EBLIDA’s identity is Europe. If EBLIDA did not exist, it should be invented because no other continent in the world has the same diversity and potential for fulfilling the fundamental objectives of any library undertaking: freedom of expression and free access to information. Any state implements democracy through an internal system of checks and balance. Europe, and the European project, have made it possible that checks and balances can be realised at a European scale through the variety and quality of political structures present in European states.

In other words, if a state turns undemocratic in Europe, Europe itself can adopt dissuasive measures to re-establish the correct mix of checks and balance in that country. Libraries are an essential part of the democratic fabric of a country. Contrary to social media, they are warrant of a pluralistic and diverse approach to information. It is the reason why EBLIDA is needed - an independent, autonomous organisation with an ability to implement democratic values and the European dream through professional practices. 

Naples and the promise of long-term rich crop production: it is not by chance, I suspect, that the next EBLIDA Executive Committee meeting will take place under a volcano.

EBLIDA Council and EBLIDA-NAPLE Conference website is now open

EBLIDA Council and EBLIDA-NAPLE Conference Dublin, Ireland 24-25 June, 2019
We are delighted to announce that EBLIDA Council and EBLIDA-NAPLE Conference website is now online.
The Conference with the theme “Open Libraries” will take place in Dublin, Ireland from 24-25 June, 2019.

We shall be regularly updating the website over the coming months.

Online Registration will be open on 1st of February 2019.

Enjoy browsing and see you in Dublin, Ireland!


Build up your bank!

How to create a fundraising organisation for libraries (and others)

by Jean-Marie Reding, EBLIDA correspondent from a capitalist banking paradise
Inspiration: (EBLIDA donor organisation)

You certainly heard this statement in your life: the subsidisation of public libraries is the mission of the public sector, which means: local government, provinces, regions or state. Yes, of course, no doubt about it! In the long term, you need continuous and regular financing.

However, the ideology of liberalism, which is quite compatible with democracy, we librarians like so much, is a trend of our times. „For some time now, there has been a movement away from reliance on public funds and towards independent sources of income” so the report "The libraries and museums of Europe in times of change" by the Council of Europe, Committee on Culture, Science, Education and Media (Doc. 13984, 15.02.2016).
In times of change - what does this mean: less state, less taxes, less public financing for libraries? How to react? Librarians have to take advantage of the capitalist system, look for private sources, and have interest in philanthropic matters, especially for donations.
Small and rural types of libraries constitute the majority (60-70%, in tiny countries even 80-90%) of public libraries not only in Europe, but also worldwide. You could say: private donations are only a drop of water in the sea! Yes, but in times of financial crisis, every drop, every charitable contribution can be of capital importance to ensure the survival of libraries. No librarian would refuse such help, even in form of small amounts (like 500 Euro). The question then arises: where can we get these funds?
Create a fundraising organisation providing financial support for public libraries, even extended to library or librarians' associations! Sometimes it can be considered as a "friends of libraries" organisation.
Some guidelines for the creation:
  • Don't wait for “better times” or help from the state. Time is money. Money you need.
  • Many philanthropic organisations exist on national level … but especially, exclusively for libraries? Public libraries? None? Then there is a need! Always. More and more in the future. Specialisation on libraries means in marketing language: USP - Unique selling proposition.
  • Find inspiration at "friends of libraries" or "library foundations" examples everywhere in the world (ex.: United for Libraries )
  • Check national legislation about philanthropy or tax deductibility of donations. Ask for (free) legal advice [before writing the bylaws of your organisation] at your national umbrella organisation for foundations (network "Trans Giving Europe" Alternatively, the Ministry of Justice, or another state organisation, whoever is responsible for the “common public interest” authorization.
  • If there is a possibility to get an official national "donation licence", authorised by an official public institution, for your organisation, check it out!
  • Only now, start writing the constitution of your organisation, to adapt it to legal philanthropic requirements.
  • After the global financial crisis (2007-2008): choose a safe and strong bank! For example a savings banks (trustee: state).
  • Check out all banking options! What does your bank propose? Is there a special interest rate account? What type of bank account has the least costs?
  • Seed capital? It depends on the choice of your bank and the account opening costs. A "kick start capital" can be for example only 20 Euro.
  • Always think big, start small!
  • Be realistic: help from the private sector - as fundraising organisation you are part of the private sector – can never replace the financial support from public institutions – and private donations can only constitute an additional financial aid.
  • Just to have an already existing organisation ready to receive immediately for example a complaisant future millionaire-philanthropist (like Andrew Carnegie) is very comforting. Therefore, you are prepared and everything is in place, if some Carnegie comes along.
  • Composition of the governing board (I): 100% volunteers, attendance fees excluded!
  • Composition of the governing board (II): 1) librarians, 2) politicians (door openers, but how about political neutrality?), 3) big donors or 4) a mixture of all. Important: find out which people collect the biggest amount of money and have pleasure to work together.
  • Members: Do you really have volunteers – with a lot of time to spend – for selling merchandising, sausages in front of supermarkets, cakes at fairs, etc.? If not, limit your activities to simple fundraising by asking people for monetary donations.
  • Only accept money? If you accept books as donations for example, you need (free) storage spaces! You normally find a book collecting charity organisation in every country; let them handle book donations.
  • Asking for donations … start with the ones you not only know well, but who TRUST you, because they know you well too: family, friends, office colleagues, association members, etc. Afterwards switch to other donor types.
  • TRUST is the first important aspect of fundraising! If donors trust you, they give more. It is a very personal approach how you come closer to potential donors. In some countries, a label "Give in confidence" is proposed (for free?) by public or private control agencies.
  • Cash or bank transfer? Make it easy and let your donor choose! In case of cash money (walking through your office and ask co-workers for example), just let your fundraisers note it down in a booklet, let them make the bank transfer and deliver a copy of the little book to the treasurer at the end of the fiscal year.
  • It is advisable to make certain that you benefit from the moral (promotion) and perhaps financial support (mailing costs' adoption) of one or several national/regional librarians' and/or libraries' associations right from the start.
  • Expenses: pay attention that your organisation stays credible by generating as few costs (administration, but also marketing) as possible. If they represent between zero and 10% of the total earnings, everything is fine. If they amount to more than 35%, your organisation is not trustworthy anymore.
  • Keep the organisation small, but flexible: no special rented office, no paid staff, and no storage space needed, only have 1-2 banking accounts, only few board meetings per year, little administrative work, and little time loss for leisure for the people involved.
  • Remember S. R. Ranganathan's fifth of five library laws: The library is a growing organism. Add: An organisation for fundraising for libraries is a growing organism. The growth rate depends on your knowledge of fundraising.
  • Possible income generation: membership fees, taxes for events (great personal commitment needed), interest on savings account (currently little performance), interest on interest (long-term commitment), life insurance (impossible for a non-profit organization), actions (very risky), bonds and government bonds (fixed interest, but poor performance), gold (too much fluctuation), real estate and art (you must have the necessary capital / storage places), and subsidies obviously.
  • Propose special services, especially if you reached to get a tax-deductible status in any way possible, like memorial giving (in case of death) or tribute giving (happy occasion, like birth, birthday, marriage, etc.).
  • If you want to benefit from the capitalist system by buying bonds: Act like a conservative investor! As non-profit organisation, you have to prove that you invested the donations as a paterfamilias (in case of judicial problems, this means: no speculation intended).
  • Degree of popularity and getting subsidies: Patience! Do not be frustrated if you do not get any in the first years of existence, but other totally overrated organizations will gain them. The day will come, when you will be considered as established.
  • Annual reports, accountancy … be transparent! Even if the big majority of the other fundraising organisations in your country do not publish their reports and accountancy correctly.
  • Presenting your results: Keep it simple, stupid! (KISS) And short. Try to limit your short form activity report, print or electronic, at 2-4 pages, in colour. It is easier to produce, to read and to mail.
  • Of course, this does not exclude a simultaneously edited full report of 20-30 pages. Nevertheless, refer in your (print) letters to an online edition if possible to limit print production costs.
  • Get an own website as soon and cheap as possible, to refer to it (like reports, balance sheets). If you are expecting international donations (outside of your country), do not forget to propose some columns in English.
  • Donors or donations, what's more important? If you have a lot of donors and donations, so both of them, feel really lucky! For the statistics the number of donors or the amount of donations can be used wisely and measure your success.
  • Donations from communities / cities (I): 25, 50, 100 Euro, etc. Small amounts, but just imagine that 1 Euro corresponds to 1 donor/citizen. Feel lucky about every donation! 0,50 or 1 Euro - take it!
  • Donations from communities / cities (II): National solidarity! Reward the local authorities who gave money by mentioning them in the reports, on the website, etc.
  • Do never forget to THANK everybody for EVERY donation! (in oral or written, and short form) To THANK is the second important aspect of fundraising.
  • You are librarians: think long-term! Yes, you will start now and, after decades, after generations of librarians/fundraisers, future librarians at the end of the 21st century will benefit from your foresight and generated capital. As so many other organizations did it at the beginning of the 20th century … (learn from history)
"Information is the currency of democracy.” a famous quote by US-President Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826). US-Senator Wendell Hampton Ford (1924-2015), added: "If"
How to become a Member?

Events and Dates


15 -16 Berlin, Germany            
Academic Publishing in Europe Nr. 14 (APE 2019)
22 - 23 London, UK International Society for Medical Publication Professionals (ISMPP) - 2019 European Meeting: "Scientific Communications in a Fast-Paced World:Fighting Fit for the Future"  
22-24 Osijek, Croatia
Bobcatsss 2019
31- 01 February Pisa, Italy
15th Italian Research Conference on Digital Libraries Digital Libraries: on supporting Open Science



7-8 Stockholm, Sweden            
From text to data – new ways of reading
London, UK
Researcher to Reader Conference 2019  
28-1 March Graz, Austria
8th Digitale Bibliothek "Digitale Horizonte" - "Digital Horizons"
Stay informed, sign up today!

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