Public interest research organisations could potentially benefit from more legal certainty as a result of a convergent industry approach to TDM fostered by the Commission through structured stakeholder dialogues. This could also limit to some extent the right-clearance costs. However, the effectiveness of this option is largely dependent on the willingness of the different parties to reach mutually satisfactory solutions.
A voluntary approach to TDM was already tried at the time of “Licences for Europe” without achieving satisfactory results for researchers as explained in the problem definition. Despite market-related progresses following the commitments taken by STM publishers as a result of Licences for Europe there is no indication that a voluntary approach would be more successful now, given the substantial reluctance of researchers’ representatives to engage in discussions based on a licences-based approach to TDM for the reasons explained above (potential persistence of different TDM conditions required by different publishers in the face of the large scale of content which has to be mined in the context of research).
In addition, problems related to the risk of increasing fragmentation in the single market as a consequence of MS adoption TDM exceptions, under different conditions, at national level cannot be solved by a voluntary approach and require, by definition, legislative intervention at EU level.
This option is likely to result in some increase in costs for rightholders (notably publishers) because of the additional efforts they would have to undertake under a structured self-regulatory approach to develop mining infrastructures (notably “Cross Ref”) and licensing offers. However, since public interest research organisations are not likely to react favourably to these efforts, this option is not likely to bring about additional licensing opportunities for publishers. The commercial market would not be addressed by stakeholder dialogues and therefore the impact on publishers as regards commercial revenues would remain the same as for the baseline.
Cooperation with researchers in the context of structured stakeholder dialogues may improve to some extent the convergence and users’ acceptance of technical safeguards applied by publishers in the context of licences. As above, publishers may incur additional costs arising from the technical safeguards acceptable to the researchers. However, given the fact that the voluntary approach is not likely to result in commonly agreed solutions as explained above, the overall impact of this option on the protection of content is likely to be similar to the baseline.
Similar to the baseline as measures under this option have a voluntary character and are therefore not expected to fully solve the legal uncertainty faced by researchers as regards TDM. Impact on copyright is the same as for the baseline. The impact on the right of freedom of art and science would be only slightly positive.