Churning through

In a must-read article, the CHE reports details of the Google contract with the U of C libraries. Among other things, it seems as if the goal is to scan as many as 3000 books per day. So — will the Classics-related holdings be done within a week or two? Maybe a little longer…

Under the contract, the university agrees to pay for pulling and shelving the books, bandwidth and hardware to store digital copies, rooms in which to do the digitization, and transportation of materials to those rooms, among other things. Google will cover its own labor, hardware and software to do the scanning, space in which to do scanning, and transportation to its spaces, along with other costs.

Both the university and Google will get digital copies of the scanned works, but there are some restrictions on how the university can use its copies. The university can offer the digital copy, whole or in parts, “as part of services offered to the university library patrons.” But the university must prevent users from downloading portions of the digital copies and stop automated scanning of the copies by, for example, other search engines.

Entire works not covered under copyright can be distributed to scholars and students for research purposes, but there are limits on in-copyright material. The university retains a right to distribute no more than 10 percent of the collection to other libraries and educational institutions for noncommercial research. Before receiving the digital copies of works, other institutions have to enter a written agreement with Google regarding the use of the copies and provide indemnity to Google.

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