Michigan Digitization Project - Google Settlement Agreement FAQ

University of Michigan FAQ on Settlement agreement between Google and plaintiffs, the Authors Guild and the Association of American Publishers These questions are designed to augment the FAQ hosted by the University of Michigan. The larger FAQ also addresses questions regarding the relationship of the Settlement to HathiTrust.

How do the proposed changes relate to Michigan’s current agreement with Google?

Many of the changes that will result directly or indirectly from the settlement will require changes in the original agreement signed between Google and the University of Michigan, if the University wishes to be a “fully participating library.” These changes in terms will be reflected by an addendum to our current agreement and will be published on the Library’s website along with the original agreement.

Can you say more about restrictions on the use of works in the public domain?

Nothing in the settlement agreement imposes any limitation on digitized pubic domain works, because public domain works are not covered works by the settlement. However, because we are now amending our digitization agreement, Google has agreed to do two important things: 1) rescind all limitations on our ability to use and share public domain works digitized by Google on a date to be determined and 2) to permit a broader set of uses of our digitized PD works prior to that time. Restrictions on the use of works in the public domain do not apply to reading the works, nor do they apply to using the works for academic research. The University of Michigan Library continues to be able to use these works as we build library services, making them viewable throughout the world to anyone who wishes to use the copy that is now hosted by the HathiTrust. Additionally, with our copies of these works, we can collaborate with scholars to perform a variety of forms of analysis (e.g., data mining, computational linguistics or textual analysis). It is also the case that under the terms of a new agreement with Google, we will be able to transfer a copy of all or part of this body of material to a researcher or institution to do work not made possible by our institution. For the time being, we may not make this body of works available for large-scale crawling or for commercial services.

What content will be included in the Google Book Search subscription, and what content is excluded from this agreement?

Under the terms of the settlement our subscription is likely to include only books published in the United States and so will not necessarily include works published abroad and actively published journals. It will also exclude works opted out by publishers or authors. There is some reason to hope that this agreement will form a template for agreements between Google and non-US publishers.

Is there any cost to the University of Michigan for access to this subscription?

Because of the number of volumes from Michigan’s collection in the subscription product, the University of Michigan will not be charged a fee for access to the subscription product until such time that our materials represent a small proportion of what is provided online. Our credits will ensure that we do not pay a subscription fee for many years and possibly decades. Even then, our discounted price will be very low.

How will Michigan’s users get access to these materials?

Our users will get access to the product as both a separate service (Google Book Search), through links in Mirlyn, and through Google’s integrated search. Google will use familiar hosting mechanisms to authenticate our users (e.g., by IP address). We will also use a proxy server for instances where a UM user comes from an unknown IP address. It is likely that Google will adopt mechanisms like Shibboleth to ease future access.

How will this affect use of content for course reserves, CTools, ILL, MITS, etc.?

Materials available through the subscription with Google will be accessible seamlessly in services like CTools and for services like course reserves. The settlement agreement specifically prohibits use of the digital files for supporting ILL. The same prohibition is likely to apply to MITS. Other uses will become clearer as the settlement is finalized and a library subscription agreement is defined in collaboration with Google.

Who should we contact (or refer people to) if we have more questions?

Much remains to be defined in the settlement and in the specific terms amending our agreement with Google. As this picture becomes clearer, so also will authoritative sources of information. In the meantime, you can direct questions to the Library Executive Council (), and will do our best to answer them.

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Last modified: 07/23/2013