Moby Lives

Library orgs warn of "enormous control" of Google

In a Library Journal story, Norman Oder reports that three major library organizations, the American Library Association, the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), and the Association of Research Libraries, have filed a statement (available here as a PDF) in federal district court sayint that while they’re not opposing the Google Book Search Settlement, the do fear its costs and controls “could compromise fundamental library values such as equity of access to information, patron privacy, and intellectual freedom.”

The statement also warns the deal might “lead to a restructuring of the publishing industry and a dramatic change to the nature of libraries,” and urged the court to “vigorously exercise … its jurisdiction over the interpretation and implementation of the Settlement.”

The groups’ main fear derives from the fact that, as Oder writes, the Settlement is structured so that Google and its partners — not the public nor the library community — have “enormous control” of what used to be avaialbe for free in the libraries.


Penny Johnson is the author of Companions in Conflict, published by Melville House in February 2019
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