Question about public domain works in Google Books with a Harvard library example (UNCLASSIFIED)

Garson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Mon Nov 14 02:45:05 UTC 2011

Update: The Librarian for Collections Digitization at Harvard sent a
response to me. She told me that she did not know the reason that
access to "The Fra: Volume 9" (1912) was blocked in Google Books. She
also said that she would ask the individuals involved in the Google
project at Harvard why there are restrictions on public domain works.
(As noted by respondents on this thread there might be some subtle
reason that the work is not in the public domain.)

I used the "Report an issue" link provided by Google Books to request
the removal of access restrictions to "The Fra, Volume 9" and there
has been no response.  Most of my requests of this type receive no
response and the volumes remain inaccessible.

Meanwhile I have located earlier instances of the time-distortion joke
about Philadelphia, so I do not need to pursue this cause with fervor.
A separate note will describe the earlier cites.

On Wed, Nov 2, 2011 at 7:57 PM, Garson O'Toole
<adsgarsonotoole at> wrote:
> Thanks to Ben, Bill, Victor, and Ken for very informative responses.
> One confusing aspect of this question, to me, is the radically
> restricted access allowed for a work published in 1912. No snippets
> are shown and no page numbers are given for The Fra, Volume 9. I
> thought access was restricted in this way only when a copyright holder
> made a request to restrict access.
> Although this thread was started with a somewhat narrow question about
> the access that has been granted by GB to one particular book I hope
> that the discussion illuminates the situation for other books
> The bibliographic information provided by GB for The Fra Volume 9
> indicates the volume was scanned four years ago in 2007. Many public
> domain works that were scanned in later years have already been
> cleared and are fully accessible.
> Title: The Fra, Volume 9
> Editors: Elbert Hubbard, Felix Shay
> Publisher: E. Hubbard, 1912
> Original from: Harvard University
> Digitized: Mar 19, 2007
> Several volumes of The Fra published before and after Volume 9 are
> fully accessible through GB and HathiTrust. Here Is a list of volumes
> at HathiTrust:
> Full view v. 02 (inc.) (1909) vol. 2, no. 5 (original from University
> of Illinois)
> Full view v. 03 (inc.) (1909) (original from Princeton University)
> Full view v. 04 (inc.) (1909 - 1910) (original from Princeton University)
> Full view v. 10 (inc.) (1912 - 1913) (original from Princeton University)
> Full view v. 11 (1913) (original from Princeton University)
> Full view v. 12 - 13 (inc.) (1913 - 1914) (original from Princeton University)
> Full view v. 14 (1914 - 1915) (original from Princeton University)
> Full view v. 17 (inc.) (1916) (original from Princeton University)
> It is always possible that an oversight has been made or a glitch in
> the database inadvertently blocked access.

The American Dialect Society -

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