OT: How come WE don't get on-line libraries like this?

Victor Steinbok aardvark66 at GMAIL.COM
Tue Jan 24 05:29:40 UTC 2012

Well, the first part has nothing to do with the law--and I am not sure
how accurate it is in any case. A reprint of a work in public domain
cannot remove that work from the public domain as it does not grant the
re-printer the copyright for the original text. The new copyright is
only for any additional material--be it preface, historical essay of
some sort, commentary and artwork. Index is not copyrightable in any
case, even if it is new. So, if Google makes that decision, they don't
make it based on law.

The second part is also not entirely accurate either. The case has
already been decided. The rules are essentially set. And it only applies
to a small fraction of works that have slipped out of copyright in the
US but are still under copyright elsewhere (and not even all of those).
So the problem is not with the law per se so much as with the
unnecessary complexity previously introduced into the copyright
statutes. That fixed now, Congress can proceed to finally stop extending
the copyright period beyond any sensible limit.


On 1/23/2012 11:57 PM, Wilson Gray wrote:
> ...
> Meanwhile, American law is so oriented toward getting paid that Google
> Books can't provide free access to a book from any date, if there's a
> reprint under copyright in existence, and there's talk of even making
> it possible to re-copyright material already out of copyright,
> including orphaned works, under current law,...

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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