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Harvard Won't Permit Google Scans of In-Copyright Material

Harvard University Library (HUL) has been a partner in Google’s library scanning project since 2004, but the boundaries of that partnership will not expand to the in-copyright works covered under Google’s new Book Search settlement. From the Harvard Crimson:

In a letter released to library staff, University Library Director Robert C. Darnton ’60 said that uncertainties in the settlement made it impossible for HUL to participate.

“As we understand it, the settlement contains too many potential limitations on access to and use of the books by members of the higher education community and by patrons of public libraries,” Darnton wrote.

“The settlement provides no assurance that the prices charged for access will be reasonable,” Darnton added, “especially since the subscription services will have no real competitors [and] the scope of access to the digitized books is in various ways both limited and uncertain.”

The Crimson notes that Harvard will continue to allow scanning of books with expired copyrights.

(Via Jose Alonso Furtado’s Twitter stream)

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  • bowerbird

    thank you, harvard, for your good sense in this matter.

    -bowerbird