The future of the European digital library, Europeana, is guaranteed. A large majority of the European Parliament voted in favour of the progress report on Europeana.
The digital library with an overview of centuries of European culture, literature and science, has been online since 2008. This year ten million photos, videos and texts have to be made available at the click of a mouse. Marietje SCHAAKE (D66/NL) who, as ALDE shadow rapporteur amid the Cultural Commission, contributed to the resolution, thinks the time has come to lift the website to a higher level. She says the Member States must do their utmost.
“I won’t be satisfied until Europeana can compete with her big American brother, Google Books.” During the past months Ms. Schaake has urged for a 2.0 version of the digital library. “A wiki-Europeana which allows citizens to upload content such as photos and videos. Then you will be able to see what’s going on around Europe, which will make it more attractive. Another advantage is that Europeana’s content will expand faster and will be more diverse and up-to-date.” At first the Christian Democrats and Social Democrats in the European Parliament were hesitant but Ms. Schaake convinced them to hold an inquiry into the European citizens’ involvement with the website.
The EP also sees prospects to use Europeana for out-of-print works. Ms Schaake says: “This entails harmonising copyright law. Europe currently has 27 different versions of copyright legislation. This makes larger companies and particularly smaller companies apprehensive about doing business in Europe. That’s why we need one European copyright law in order to have a comprehensive European digital market” concluded Ms. Schaake.