OCLC Record Use Policy
OCLC has finalized its record use policy. The content is substantially the same as it was in the previous draft, which I commented on. There is one important improvement, however: the text clarifies OCLC's claims to copyright.
While, on behalf of its members, OCLC claims copyright rights in WorldCat as a compilation, it does not claim copyright ownership of individual records.Of course, claiming copyright and actually having the right are not the same thing, especially with databases. Here's what BitLaw says:
Databases as Compilations: Databases are generally protected by copyright law as compilations. Under the Copyright Act, a compilation is defined as a "collection and assembling of preexisting materials or of data that are selected in such a way that the resulting work as a whole constitutes an original work of authorship." 17. U.S.C. § 101.Generally, carefully selected compilations may make the "original work of authorship" cut; I'm not convinced that a union catalog of library holdings does.
We are still waiting to hear from the judge in the Google Books case. (Every time I write that I check to see if it hasn't been released in the last hour.) Meanwhile, GBS continues to function in Internet time. Google has many publishers on board with its partners program, enough that GBS is becoming a serious rival to Amazon. It has even announced that it will begin selling e-books. The opening screen is the exact opposite of the Google Search screen -- it loads up many dozens of book covers and requires significant scrolling to browse to the bottom. Google has added personalization options ("my library") and lets you create multiple "shelves" to organize your materials.
Google was first sued in 2005. Five years is a very long time where technology is concerned. In 2005 the ebook was considered dead; now with the Kindle and the iPad, ebooks are alive and well and everyone is trying to get into that game. In that time since 2005, Google has pretty much shown the publishing industry that they can benefit from the online presence that Google is providing. The settlement reads like it was written in another era, trying to solve problems that may not really be considered problems today. The only issue remaining is that of orphan works, and if we could do a decent analysis of copyright holdings, I suspect that the number of orphan works would not be all that large.
Linked Library Data
At ALA there was a one-day preconference on linked data, and a half day un-conference attended by about 50 people. There are notes from the un-conference, which broke out barcamp-style into 6 groups for discussion.
The World Wide Web consortium has an incubator group on linked library data. This group is tasked to spend one year figuring out how to jump-start the creation of linked data in the library world.
There are ongoing efforts at Library of Congress to produce vocabularies, and of course the RDA vocabularies are available (and almost finalized). Ross Singer has announced some of the MARC codes are available (I presume on his own site). FRBR is being defined in linked data form by IFLA.
We've got just about everything but ... linked data. I'm thrilled that things are moving forward, but frustrated that I still can't see usable results. Deep breath; patience.