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VIVA: Joint CDL Task Force

Virginia's Academic Library Consortium

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Joint Controlled Digital Lending Task Force


The VIVA Controlled Digital Lending Task Force will develop statewide guidance and approaches for Controlled Digital Lending, including both policy and mechanism. They will review current organizational statements and approaches, consult with library legal experts as needed, and draft statewide recommendations for Steering Committee consideration. They will investigate delivery mechanisms, workflows, and potential uses and conflicts across the consortium’s membership and share best practices and workflows back out to VIVA institutions. The task force membership was jointly appointed by the Chairs of the Collections and Resource Sharing Committees.


In 2019, the Resource Sharing Committee (RSC) embarked on a needs analysis of VIVA member libraries. One of the several recommendations that emerged from this work was a call for statewide guidance, both from a policy and workflow perspective, on Controlled Digital Lending (CDL). CDL is the library practice of circulating temporary digital copies of owned print, most often on a one-to-one ratio, by removing the print copy from circulation while the digital copy is in use. In addition to owning a print copy of any item circulated in this manner, libraries are also responsible for maintaining the right ratio of owned and loaned copies, and enacting any technical measures needed to ensure that the digital file will not be improperly copied or redistributed. The rational and approach for this type of lending is based on the fair use doctrine within the US Copyright Act.

The emergence of COVID-19 and the switch to virtual instruction and research across the state of Virginia only amplified the need and support for this practice at VIVA institutions. The recommendations of what constitutes fair use have been rapidly evolving during this time frame as well, particularly because of the wide range of purposes for which CDL is used. VIVA Libraries specifically have discussed CDL in relation to interlibrary loan and access and delivery services, shared print and bibliodiversity concerns, course reserves and bookstore contracts, and the varying approaches to these practices.

CDL concerns range across VIVA Committees, therefore it was determined that the best approach was a joint task force, made up of members from the Collections and Resource Sharing Committees, and others as appointed, to further explore the identified issues, propose workflows and solutions, and draft VIVA policy recommendations.




Task Force Chair

Cheri Duncan
James Madison University


Jessica Bowdoin
George Mason University

Shaunna Hunter
Hampden-Sydney College

Renee Reighart
University of Virginia

Matthew Todd
Northern Virginia Community College

Rachel Miles
Virginia Tech University

Ex Officio

Genya O'Gara