Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Great Book Bank Robbery - A Reseach and Information Library Perspective

A well constructed and logical article by Robert Dalton, a professor at Harvard in the 'New York Review of Books', titled ‘Google & the Future of Books’ which is one we would like to share with our readers.

Dalton writes as a research librarian and although this is a different perspective to the trade, his arguments are ones that should be heard and debated by all. He gives a balanced and lengthy insight into the history of research papers and learned journals and that in itself is a recommended read. The parallel he draws between the scholarly or learned journal model and Google is very interesting. He examines the potential impact of the Google settlement, but questions if the intent isn’t achieved, who or what will check the outcome.

‘No one knows, because the settlement is so complex that it is difficult to perceive the legal and economic contours in the new lay of the land.’

‘Of the 7 million books that Google reportedly had digitized by November 2008, 1 million are works in the public domain; 1 million are in copyright and in print; and 5 million are in copyright but out of print.’

No comments: