Digital Library Digest: October 23, 2012

Posted by Vicky Zeamer on October 23, 2012 in Digital Library Digest.

 Judge determines Hathi Trust to be within Fair Use and calls scanning effort “invaluable contribution to the progress of science and cultivation of the arts”

“A federal judge on Wednesday threw out a copyright infringement lawsuit against universities that participated in a massive book-digitization project in conjunction with Google without permission from rights holders.

“U.S. District Judge Harold Baer of New York dismissed an infringement lawsuit brought by the Authors Guild and other writers’ guilds, saying the universities had a fair use defense. The guild accused the University of California, University of Wisconsin, Indiana University, Cornell University and University of Michigan of wanton copyright infringement for scanning and placing the books into the so-called HathiTrust Digital Library.

“The trust consists of 10 million digital volumes, 73 percent of which are protected by copyright. The trust provides full-text searches only with a rights holder’s permission, and gives full-text access for readers with “certified print disabilities,” Baer said.

“Google has scanned the books for the universities as part of its Google Books project. The Authors Guild is suing Google in related litigation, which is stalled on appeal. Several publishers, also suing Google, settled with Google last week for undisclosed terms.

“Fair use is a defense to copyright infringement and may be invoked for purposes such as criticism, commentary, news reporting, teaching, scholarship or research, the judge noted. He said the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) also played a major factor.

” “Although I recognize that the facts here may on some levels be without precedent, I am convinced that they fall safely within the protection of fair use such that there is no genuine issue of material fact,”Baer wrote. “I cannot imagine a definition of fair use that would not encompass the transformative uses made by defendants … and would require that I terminate this invaluable contribution to the progress of science and cultivation of the arts that at the same time effectuates the ideals espoused by the ADA.” “

From David Kravet’s article for Wired Magazine, Judge Says Fair Use Protects Universities in Book-Scanning Project

More on digitization legal issues: Federal Notice of Inquiry concerning Orphan Works copyright issues 

“Monday’s (October 22, 2012) issue of the Federal Register includes a “notice of inquiry” from the U.S. Copyright Office. Can you help them? The request, where to send your comments, and plenty of background (including sections about ongoing litigation the recent HathiTrust decision, and mass digitization) in the PDF below (can be downloaded).”

From Gary Price on Info Docket, U.S. Copyright Offices Continuing Work on Orphan Works Problem With Public Inquiry

Open Access to academic articles helps to spread quality information to those who normally do not have access to such resources

“Three years after MIT faculty chose to make their scholarly articles openly accessible through the MIT Faculty Open Access Policy, individuals around the world have benefited from free access to MIT’s research. Comments submitted to the Open Access Articles Collection in DSpace@MIT reveal that faculty articles have helped a wide range of people—students trying to complete professional and undergraduate degrees; professors at universities with limited access to scholarly journals; independent researchers; those in need of medical information; and those working to stay current and advance their careers.

” “I am an independent researcher from a third world country not affiliated to any university or a company,” a commenter from Nepal said. “I neither have access to paid journals nor I can afford them. MIT’s Open Access is something I love and rely upon…Thank you again for thinking about the unfortunates and keeping the information free and open.”

“Before the open access movement, and even now, much of the content published in academic journals was inaccessible to general readers due to high subscription costs. The MIT faculty’s groundbreaking decision to share their articles with the public has made a significant impact within academia and well beyond. Since the Policy went into effect in March 2009, over 7,000 papers, roughly 33% of MIT faculty articles published in that period, have been made openly available. The papers have been downloaded over 630,000 times, and readers have come from nearly every country in the world (see figure). Their stories have clearly answered the question of whether there were potential readers of MIT-authored papers who would benefit by open access. “

From Ellen Duranceau’s post on MIT Libraries News siteWorldwide Impact of Open Access to MIT Faculty Research

San Francisco archiving project does not just preserve history digitally, but their user experience also brings digital archives to life through repurposed building 

“In Sunday’s Chronicle, I profiled Brewster Kahle, the entrepreneur turned digital librarian who is cataloging online history with the Internet Archive of San Francisco.

“The archive is hosting a public event on Thursday, Oct. 25, starting at 6:30 p.m. to officially mark the organization reaching an important milestone – 10 petabytes worth of digital material stored. That includes millions of digital books, music, movies and web pages.

“The history of libraries is they are burned,” he said. “That’s what will happen to us. We don’t know when. Hopefully, it is centuries from now.”

“So the archive is fully backed up on servers in Redwood City, with partial copies in Amsterdam and — appropriately enough – Alexandria, Egypt.

“The archive is based in a former Fourth Church of Christ, Scientist Church, a tall, white-washed building with Greek columns that stands out at the end of a block of homes on Funston Avenue.

“Inside, the archive has kept the main structure largely intact, including the main worship hall that also holds some of the computer servers. The hall has a working organ and pews filled with clay statues of archive employees after they worked there for three years.

“With the statues, Kahle said he wanted give a “certain level of immortality” to Internet Archive workers, “because if you work for a non-profit, there’s no gold at the end of the rainbow, there’s no cash out. You’re here for some other reason and usually it’s because what you’re doing, you believe in. You should be recognized for having done important things.”

“The archive has also kept the old wooden desks in the old Christian Science reading room next the church, but is converting them with modern touch-screen monitors for people to come in and browse through the archive’s digital material.”

From Benny Evangelista’s article on SF Gate, Internet Archive to celebrate milestone

The Metropolitan Museum of Art brings out of print exhibition catalogs online with interactivity 

“Determined to “bring the Met’s scholarly heritage into the digital age,” as he put it, the museum on Friday began MetPublications, an online resource that will allow users to search more than 600 catalogs, journals and museum bulletins by title, keyword, publication type, theme or collection. Of that number, 368 are out-of-print catalogs and publications that can be previewed and searched. Also available on the site are 272 titles still in print. It will be possible to obtain on-demand copies of 140 out-of-print books and to get paperbound editions with digitally printed color reproductions through Yale University Press. “What’s value-added is the extent the team has cross-linked to all the Met’s artworks,” Mr. Campbell said. MetPublications includes a description and table of contents for almost every book as well as information about the authors, reviews of the books and links to related publications and art in the museum’s collections. There will also be links to buy in-print books.

” ‘We are all recognizing that our mission is not just the physical audience,’ Mr. Campbell said. ‘We’re addressing a world audience too.’ “

From Carol Vogel’s article in The New York Times, Met’s Exhibition Catalogs Revived for a Digital Life

Presentations internationally stress the importance of making information accessible to the poor and homeless

Excerpt from the proposal Empowering the Poor with Right to Information and Library Services”, Dr. Vivekanand Jain said:

So, Right to information and libraries can create an environment of information literacy among poor people, so they may be able to know their rights and improve their living standard.  To know the government initiatives for the welfare of the society. After taking the benefits of policies they become well informed citizens”

Internet, Libraries and other social media are empowering the users with information. United Nations and national organisations are taking care of basic human rights.  It is the real democracy, if we implement rights to information effectively. Free flow of information can reduce the digital divide/ information divide among all citizens of the world. Information can change the life: by solving the problems of poor and make them creative and innovative person. By applying various National and International laws effectively for the benefit of the poor people of special needs; We can make them well informed, self dependent, and respectable citizens.”

From the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), “The Homeless and the Libraries – The Right to Information and Knowledge For All”: Satellite Program Presentations

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