Urban Libraries Council Objects to Google Book Settlement Terms
As the deadline for objecting to the Google Book Settlement approaches -- it's September 4 -- it seems like a new party enters the case every week. This week it's the libraries that are upset with the deal and want some changes.
This week, the Urban Libraries Council (ULC), a member organization of medium and large public libraries called for changes in the settlement plan, as did New York State librarian Bernard Margolis, in a separate open letter to leaders in the library community.
"This is a pivotal moment in the history of access to recorded information, not unlike the introduction of moveable type or the birth of the Internet," wrote Susan Benton, the Urban Libraries Council's (ULC) new president and CEO, in a letter to the federal court overseeing approval of the settlement. "It is important, therefore, that the needs of the public at large shape the thinking of those responsible for guiding this extraordinary advance."
The group did not ask for the settlement to be overturned, but wants changes made in the way the free terminals are made available. Right now the plan calls for only one free terminal in each library building, which is insufficient to provide the public with access to the scanned books. The hearing on all these objections is going to be a wild one.