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Ordnance Survey helps librarians to copy right

United Kingdom, 2 November 2006 – The scope for copying Ordnance Survey maps held in public libraries across Great Britain has been clarified under fresh guidance issued today. The national mapping agency has concluded discussions with representatives of the library and archive community, to clarify the process of copying and distribution under established copyright law.

The guidance, published in collaboration with LACA – the Libraries and Archives Copyright Alliance – is designed to help anyone who seeks to copy in-copyright Ordnance Survey mapping held by public libraries and archives. It covers photocopying, scanning and tracing of paper maps and the printing of extracts from electronic map data.

The aim is to ensure that people are clear about where copying is permitted under copyright legislation, such as for private study and non-commercial research. Libraries and archives are being encouraged to display posters containing guidance notes close to copying equipment and other prominent places within their premises. The posters are downloadable from Ordnance Survey’s website.

The guidance, supported by the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, is also intended to offer greater reassurance to library and archive staff on the copying services they can offer to the public.

It clearly specifies Ordnance Survey’s own requirements as to copyright acknowledgement and permitted uses under copyright legislation. In appropriate circumstances, for example, Ordnance Survey will allow librarians to make up to four copies of up to 625 sq cm of mapping within public libraries and archives.

More details of the new guidelines are available at: