The preservation of digital publications involves various technical, legal, economic and organization issues. Copyright law and licensing arrangements may prevent problems for libraries that wish to preserve digital resources in the long-term or even short term. Digital preservation strategies involve copying and it is not clear with copyright legislation in the UK and Europewill allow the sort of copying needed. The complex nature of digital publications and new publishing models present various problems including resource intensive rights clearance and reliance on publishers to continue to provide access and preserve digital publications. Extension of legal deposit laws may go some way to overcoming access versus ownership issues, but the issue of rights to copy deposited material remains. Other possible solutions include model licence agreements that that provide for preservation in some way. There is a need for research to clarify issues identified in the preservation and legal literature and to provide a clearer picture of the activities and perceptions of stakeholders in digital preservation, including authors, publishers and libraries.