What is the ReLIRE project?

Are you an author? Here are the various stages and challenges inherent in this project (…)

The ReLIRE register’s ultimate aim is to list all out-of-print books from the twentieth century, that are subject to copyright, published in France between 1 January 1901 and 31 December 2000, and that are no longer being marketed or published in printed or electronic form. The law passed on 1 March 2012 allows these books to be digitised. The associated digital commercial rights (reproduction in digital format and availability on line) are exercised by SOFIA, which is an approved society for the collection and distribution of the remuneration arising from the exercise of copyright (“SPRD”).

You are an author (or rights holder) of at least one out-of-print book

Are your books affected by this new arrangement?
Check website to see if your titles are listed. If they are still on sale in printed or digital form, or even being re-published, notify the National Library of France (BNF) so that they can be withdrawn from the register.

If you wish you can opt out of this collective management of your rights by notifying the BNF of your intention to withdraw. An author can exercise his/her right to opt out at any time (see ).

New titles are added annually to this register on 21 March.

Why should I participate in this project?

In broad terms, because this is an all-embracing heritage project that enables the digitisation and dissemination of books that are no longer available in printed form; this is in the interest of not only authors, but also publishers and the general public.
• Specifically, in order to be associated with the rebirth of those of your titles that are no longer in print and hence to share in the new possibilities offered by digital books via a collective management company where authors and publishers have equal representation.

What to do if your work is recorded in the registry
Check that the list of your titles includes only unavailable works (any books that are in fact still available in printed or digital form should be notified to the BNF).
Two situations:
1 – You want to remain within the arrangement. 
• In this case, the management of your copyright and the rights associated with digital re-issue of the books concerned will be exercised by SOFIA with effect from 21 September 2013, unless your publisher is unwilling to agree. He will then be obliged, with your agreement, to commercialise the work over the two year period following his rejection of the BNF solution.

If you do not belong to any society for the collection and distribution of rights that could represent you, you should apply to SOFIA so that we can pay you the remuneration to which you are entitled; complete the appropriate form and submit it to this address:

If you have reclaimed your copyright in respect of these works from your publisher, please let us know by completing the same form so that you can receive the entirety of the relevant remuneration (subject to recognition of the rights due to joint authors or other contributors to these books).

2 – You do not want your books to be digitised and commercialised via this arrangement.
You can exercise your right to withdraw in respect of one or more of your titles. Go to, then click on “details et actions”. Enter your request for withdrawal, which is then submitted to the BNF. Supporting documents are forwarded to SOFIA. Your request will be recorded by the BNF within three months.

Launch of collective management for out-of-print books on 21 September 2013

In the absence of any requests for withdrawal, books listed on the register are recorded on the collective management index.
SOFIA has legal powers that are limited to
the exercise of the right to authorise the reproduction of a book in digital unabridged form. It has no other rights over those that are due to an author or publisher by virtue of a publishing contract.
With effect from 21 September 2013, SOFIA is legally obliged to offer the original publisher, where the latter retains rights in respect of printed reproduction, an exclusive licence in digital format for 10 Years, renewable by tacit agreement.

If the publisher accepts, he must offer the work on the market within three years. The author may still object to the publisher exploiting this licence by providing proof that his publisher no longer has publishing rights over the relevant book.
• If the original publisher rejects this proposal, or fails to respond within two months, SOFIA will issue 5-year licences to any publisher who requests this.

 Next moves…
If one of your books becomes subject to collective management, it will be digitised and offered to the public; it will be available subject to payment via networks of bookshops or of sites that specialise in the sale of books. SOFIA is responsible for monitoring the correct commercialisation of such works and the equitable distribution of sums due to authors and their rights holders.

The first out-of-print books should be available for commercialisation by the end of 2015.

If you realise too late that your book has been digitised 
An author who was not notified that the ReLIRE project was being

launched can, at any time, object to the exercise by SOFIA of its right to authorise digital licensing in respect of his/her books in the following situations:

if he considers that this commercialisation might prejudice his honour or reputation,  
• if he can show that he holds the rights for digital publishing of the out-of-print work,
• if he wishes, in conjunction with his publisher who holds rights for the printed work, to jointly withdraw the work from collective management.

If you have any questions, submit them here: