Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The right to copy

From Inside Higher Ed: Note that UC is a member of the Hathi Trust

HathiTrust’s book digitization and accessibility efforts have once again been found to be fair uses of copyrighted works, as a federal appeals court on Tuesday dealt a further blow to authors’ groups and publishers. The opinion, delivered by a three-judge panel in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, affirms nearly all of a lower court’s ruling that praised the “transformative uses” of HathiTrust and its “invaluable contribution to the progress of science and cultivation of the arts.” ...

HathiTrust is a consortium of about 80 member institutions working with Google to digitize the books in their libraries. The HathiTrust Digital Library hosts those books -- there are more than 10 million in total -- and if a member loses a book in its collection, it can get a replacement copy if one isn’t available at a fair price. Scholars can also search the database for content, but unless the copyright holder authorizes broader use, results only show page numbers and where search terms appear. That information can still be useful for researchers conducting text analysis -- or as an indicator of which sources they should track down. The digital library offers additional features to scholars with disabilities, who can access complete copies if they can show that they are unable to read a work in print...

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