Press Release: Academic Libraries Video Trust Gains Institutional Members, Achieves Full Functionality

The Academic Libraries Video Trust [ALVT], a project of the National Media Market [NMM], today announced the membership of several institutions, including American University, Duke University, the University of California at Berkeley, the University of Delaware, Hofstra University, and the University of North Texas. These six institutions have all joined, or stated their intention to join, as Founding Benefactors, meaning their membership will last the length of the project, for a one-time fee of $10,000.00. The project is now live and fully functional at videotrust.org, and offers institutional memberships at a variety of levels.

 ALVT was started to facilitate preservation of commercial video content (primarily VHS) which is no longer in distribution. ALVT leverages preservation and replacement exceptions for reproduction by libraries established through U.S. copyright law (17 U.S. Code § 108) that allow for duplication of content that is damaged, deteriorating, lost, or stolen, or is in an obsolete format. Member institutions are required to confirm that their use of any materials archived by the Trust will be in compliance with Section 108.

 “We’re excited that these prominent institutions have chosen to participate in this venture, which we believe will preserve tens of thousands of hours of otherwise irreplaceable video content for libraries all over the United States,” said Project Collaborator Sarah McCleskey, Head of Resource and Collection Services at the Hofstra University Library and ALVT Board Member. McCleskey originated the idea of ALVT a year ago, after completing a term as Chair of the National Media Market.

 “The ALVT website functions as the central repository for member institutions, who are allowed to upload digital files of VHS content they wish to preserve and share with other libraries that already own that content on VHS,” explains Jeff Tamblyn, NMM’s current chair and ALVT project collaborator.  “The past twelve months has involved expanding the original Section 108 Due Diligence Project website and connecting it to a cloud-based repository where content can be securely uploaded and accessed by member institutions. We’ve also performed the requisite legal research and documentation with the assistance of a prominent attorney, Kenneth Crews of Gipson, Hoffman & Pancione.”

 Formerly known as the Section 108 Due Diligence Project website, the ALVT site contains a database of titles which have been researched and documented as unobtainable under Section 108 guidelines, plus information about membership and participants in the project. Future plans include crowdsourcing caption files and assisting members with digitization planning and costs.

 The Section 108 Due Diligence Project Website was created by a team that included the late deg farrelly, Librarian Emeritus at Arizona State University, and colleagues Chris Lewis, Media Librarian at American University, Washington, D.C., and Jane Hutchinson Surdi, former Associate Director of Media Services at William Paterson University Library, in Paterson, N.J. In honor of Hutchinson’s previous contributions, Wm. Paterson’s library has agreed to upload an estimated 250 titles digitally preserved under Section 108, that are no longer available through regular distribution channels. The university has been awarded the status of Member Emeritus.

 The Trust continues to accept libraries and archives as institutional members, and will stage a webinar for interested parties in the coming weeks. ALVT offers favorable plans for consortial membership. Interested parties are encouraged to contact Jeff Tamblyn, Chair of the National Media Market and Conference (chair@nmm.net), for further information.

 The National Media Market is a nonprofit organization that produces an annual conference bringing together librarians who collect and curate film and video with film distributors, streaming platforms and other media related services. It’s 2019 meeting will convene October 20th for 4 days, in Austin. More information is available at nmm.net.

 Relevant sites:

National Media Market https://www.nmm.net/

Academic Libraries Video Trust http://videotrust.org/  

Cornell Law School Section 108 webpage https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/108

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