UW-Madison libraries join Google book project
UW joining Google book project
PATRICIA SIMMS email@example.com
October 12, 2006
UW-Madison is joining a rarified cadre of eight libraries that have joined Google's effort to digitize the world's books and make them searchable on the Internet.
Under an agreement signed Wednesday, the popular search engine company Google will add hundreds of thousands of the more than 7.2 million volumes at UW- Madison campus libraries and the Wisconsin Historical Society to its controversial worldwide book digitization project, called Google Book Search.
UW-Madison and Google will share the operating costs of the project - for the university, that means covering the cost of selecting and pulling volumes off the shelves, boxing them for transport to Google offices in either Michigan or California for scanning and unpacking them afterward, said Edward Van Gemert, interim director of the UW-Madison General Library System.
"No money changes hands," he said. "But there are costs for each party. Where the material is going and how is all yet to be planned and determined."
The other seven libraries involved are Harvard University, the University of Michigan, the New York Public Library, Oxford University, Stanford University, the University of California System, and, most recently, Madrid's Complutense University, the largest university library in Spain.
The U.S. Library of Congress is also conducting a pilot project with Google, and Google spokeswoman Megan Lamb said Wednesday the California-based company is eager to contract with other libraries. "We absolutely want to expand the program," launched in 2004, Lamb said.
Van Gemert said unlike the universities of California and Michigan, UW-Madison has decided to share only those volumes and materials that are in the public domain: books published before 1923, state and federal documents and works whose authors have consented to the process.
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