Link of the Day: Google Scanning Out of Print Books

Primary version of this post, with visual content, at Barry Stocker’s Weblog

Books: A Plan to Scan. Financial Times 12 August. Richard Waters.

An article looking at he issues around Google’s systematic digitisation of out of print books. This should be a very large and important archive for scholarship.

Main points

There will be a massive impact in making out of print titles available online, which are otherwise close to impossible to find, achieved by digitising library books.

Service will requirement payment, though Google say this will be on a low cost wide participation model.

Libraries will be offered terminals which can information contents of archive whether or not they subscribe.

Where books are still in copyright, consent of authors will be presumed unless they inform Google otherwise.

Anti-monopoly bodies in the USA are concerned about market domination of online sales of digitised books. The Google project could exceed Amazon as an online book seller.

European governments are concerned because this is being done from the USA without consultation and will include European titles in American libraries.

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