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ARSCLIB  July 2019

ARSCLIB July 2019

Subject:

Evaluating Digital Music for Library Collections

From:

David MacFadyen <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

ARSC Library and Archives Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Fri, 5 Jul 2019 19:06:08 -0400

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I have a three-part question, grounded in the complexities of assigning any *financial* worth to digital music collections. 

I’m a professor at UCLA, and have—over several decades—aggregated / edited a collection of Russian/East European tracks that numbers something like 2.5million in total, on all kinds of formats. 
I will donate this to a library or museum; I have no intention of selling anything.

However...! 
When it comes to any possible financial evaluation or assessment that’s needed by a US library, at least three issues arise.

1. Does the recent Redigi case before the Supreme Court now mean that digital music archives may not be assigned any fiscal worth? https://www.digitalmusicnews.com/2019/03/06/redigi-v-capitol-supreme-court/

2. Does anybody have experience in the evaluation of digital music prior to a donation? I’ve done plenty of research myself, but find lots of diverse, if not contradictory opinions online. 

3. This is all from Russia, where piracy is so bad, a good deal of music is distributed for free. It helps to promote live shows. Nonetheless, even if we’re dealing with countless amateur and underground works that were never for sale, is there an inherent copyright complication in assigning them monetary value prior to the same donation?

Russia and the US *should* observe the Berne Convention in identical ways. They, of course, do no such thing.

Thanks!
David (MacFadyen)
Los Angeles 

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