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RE: OUP Project TORCH - Thanks; Oct 1 deadline reminder

I don't hold any brief for OUP. In fact their licensing policy has on
occasions that concern us seemed to be less open to the world at large
(and us in particular) than it should be, but this is surely an
unreasonably sour reaction.

It is certainly not reasonable to portray OUP as a mutilator of books when
licensing restrictions prevent them from practically providing
illustrations to all the titles that they may wish to include in a
database collection which will surely be very useful to those who need to
search and consult the books in question.

It is anyway questionable that a complex system of 'licensing' for various
e-uses will be the best way of handling the electronic advantages of
illustrations in books which are monographic or theoretical in character.
An effective way of citing and identifying illustrations which may already
be available would be a better way of handling this issue. The same goes
for 'musical' citations. Once there are effective digital repositories of
artistic and musical objects, theoretical works will be better off citing
the relevant images and audio files, rather than attempting to reproduce
them. That is of course a matter of opinion, but its one that should be
given some consideration.

Give the publishers a break!

Adam Hodgkin

-----Original Message-----
[mailto:owner-liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu] On Behalf Of David Goodman
Sent: 05 October 2004 20:05
To: liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu; liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu
Subject: RE: OUP Project TORCH - Thanks; Oct 1 deadline reminder 

To avoid possibly biasing the survey, I have delayed posting until after
the survey closed. OUP is proposing to reprint electronically numerous
important scholarly books, mainly from its humanities and social sciences
list, and sell them in packages--the main purpose of the survey seems to
have been an attempt to determine a market price--and presumably to get
some publicity for the project.

Unfortunately OUP does not own the rights to many of the illustrations. It
thus proposes to provide these books, in fields such as art, literature,
and history, without some of the illustrations, rather than pay the
necessary fees to the rightsholders, which might price the books beyond
what libraries would pay.

I have never known a library deliberately purchase books with some of the
illustrations removed (except sometimes in the case of great rarities
where complete copies cannot be obtained). I have never known a library
even accept such books as donations. I refer here not just to academic
research libraries, but to all libraries, however modest.

I recognize the dilemma, but OUP may soon be able to advertise itself as:
OUP, the Publisher of Mutilated Books. Perhaps Torch was the right name
for this project.

David Goodman