Authors Guild Attacks Libraries For Lending Digital Books | Techdirt

It’s been a few years since we last had to write about the Authors Guild — a group that ostensibly represents authors’ interests, but really acts more like a front group for publishers’ interests (often in opposition to the actual interests of authors). As you may recall, the Authors Guild spent tons of the money authors gave it for dues on suing libraries. Specifically it sued and lost against Hathitrust (a collection of libraries which were scanning books to make a searchable index), and then had the same result with Google and its book scanning project. In both cases, the courts deemed such scanning and indexing as fair use — a transformative use of the work.

Apparently, unable to comprehend that maybe it shouldn’t attack libraries, the Authors Guild is at it again, threatening the Internet Archive and other libraries for daring to start a carefully designed program to lend out copies of some of their scanned works. The system, called Controlled Digital Lending was put together by a bunch of libraries and the Internet Archive to lay out a system that they believe is clearly covered by fair use, by which digital scans of certain books could be made available on loan like any other library book. The whole setup of the Controlled Digital Lending system is carefully laid out and designed to mimic traditional library lending….”

Open Access Tools & Resources – Tinkering Librarians

“When following a conference on Twitter last week, one attendee tweeted about Unpaywall. It was the first time they had heard of it, which surprised me at first. I was equally surprised that the Open Access Button had not been mentioned at the same time.  I realize now that I have had the benefit of attending OpenCon and following many people active in Open for a while now. Below I will list some of the open tools and resources, which hopefully, someone will find useful.”

Rights Holder Creative Commons Declaration Form | www.hathitrust… | HathiTrust Digital Library

“If you are a copyright holder or a representative of a copyright holder of a work in HathiTrust and would like to authorize the work to be opened for full view, the following form enables you to select a Creative Commons license and authorize HathiTrust to release the work….”

Assisting living authors in opening access to their in-copyright works: a report from Iceland

Abstract: This article reports on a project, spanning the years 2013 to 2015, that assisted living Icelandic authors in opening access to out-of-print books that they wished to make publicly available. While this effort was small in scale, it sheds light on the complexities of releasing still-in-copyright works by living authors under a Creative Commons license. The project worked primarily with books that had been digitized by Google and included in HathiTrust’s collections. The project showed that Icelandic authors of older scholarly works were generally very interested in releasing them to the public at no charge by changing their rights status in HathiTrust. Meanwhile, authors who wished to release works that had not already been scanned were sometimes frustrated in their efforts to do so. The article concludes with some reflections on the benefits and drawbacks of author-by-author rights clearance, as compared to other ways of increasing the accessibility of out-of-print titles