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Google Settlement: Harvard not participating

Harvard will not be part of the Google Settlement reached last 

from the Harvard Crimson -

"Harvard University Library will not take part in Google's book 
scanning project for in-copyright works after finding the terms 
of its landmark $125 million settlement regarding copyrighted 
materials unsatisfactory, University officials said yesterday.

"Harvard had been one of five academic libraries, along with 
Stanford, Oxford, Michigan, and the New York Public Library, 
partner with Google when the book scanning initiative was 
announced in October 2004. University officials said that Harvard 
would continue its policy of only allowing Google to scan books 
whose copyrights have expired. ...

"In a letter released to library staff, University Library 
Director Robert C. Darnton, said that uncertainties in the 
settlement made it impossible for HUL to participate.

"As we understand it, the settlement contains too many potential 
limitations on access to and use of the books by members of the 
higher education community and by patrons of public libraries," 
Darnton wrote.

"The settlement provides no assurance that the prices charged for 
access will be reasonable," Darnton added, "especially since the 
subscription services will have no real competitors [and] the 
scope of access to the digitized books is in various ways both 
limited and uncertain."

He also said that the quality of the books may be a cause for 
concern, as "in many cases will be missing photographs, 
illustrations and other pictorial works, which will reduce their 
utility for research and education."

Lesley Ellen Harris
lesley @ copyrightlaws.com