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Re: Google books



Anybody can scan books and journals out of copyright (before 1923) now and 
offer them for free or for a fee. The Library of Congress has scanned about 
60,000 books available through archive.org: 
http://www.archive.org/details/library_of_congress . Those out of copyright can 
be downloaded for free. (Some others are available under some limitations.) So 
there's  hope for downloading those old books by Marsh or John Bell Hatcher. 

What's special and controversial about the Google Book settlement is that it 
allows Google to scan books in copyright but out of print if the copyright 
owners can't be located (these are called "orphan works"). That's what Google 
could get away charging for. Authors who register for the settlement can decide 
whether or not to allow Google to scan out-of-print books. If we do, we will 
receive a share of their income. The general belief it that Google will try to 
make money by selling copies and/or selling advertising on pages where the 
books are displayed on-line, as they do now with searches. How much they'll 
charge remains to be seen. 

At 11:22 PM +0000 1/6/10, Phillip Bigelow wrote:

><<<Scanning out-of-copyright books and journals is a good thing for the 
>community, as long as Google doesn't try to charge $30-$40 per paper for 
>access, as the big commercial journal publishers do.>>>
>
>
>In the news story I saw, the interview-ee (a Google employee) intimated that 
>that is Google's ultimate goal.
>
>Of course, with these works (copyright in effect or not), Google doesn't own 
>the books, so other businesses can clone Google's e-manuscipt business plan 
>and do it themselves, too.
>
>Hopefully, when Google starts charging, there will be competition willing to 
>under-cut them.  If competition doesn't materialize soon enough, be prepared 
>to pay through the nose.
>

-- 
Jeff Hecht, science & technology writer
jeff@jeffhecht.com or jhecht@nasw.org
525 Auburn St., Auburndale, MA 02466 USA
tel. 617-965-3834  http://www.jeffhecht.com