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UC Libraries Provide Free Public Access to Digitized Books

October 3, 2005

Books from the UC libraries will be scanned and made freely
available online through a new consortium

OAKLAND, CA - The University of California libraries today (Oct.
3) announced their participation in a partnership to build a freely
accessible digital library with materials drawn from across the
world. The UC libraries will contribute books and resources in
order to build a collection of out-of-copyright American literature
that will include works by many great American authors.

With the support of Yahoo! Inc., UC library books will be
digitized by the Internet Archive using a new technology that scans
books at the cost of 10 cents per page. In comparison, the costs to
scan archival photographs and documents typically begin at $20 per page.

The materials will be available from <

the Web site of the Open Content Alliance, a global
consortium announced today (Oct. 3) that will build and openly
distribute a comprehensive set of digitized print and multimedia content.

“Readers will rejoice to have public domain literary texts
available online for anyone who wants to read or work on them,”
said Richard Terdiman, professor of literature at UC Santa Cruz.
“This will be a wonderful boon to students and scholars, and a
great service to the public.”

The Open Content Alliance’s founding contributors also include
the University of Toronto, the European Archive, the National
Archives (UK), O’Reilly Media Inc., Adobe, and Hewlett Packard Labs.

“We’re pleased to join the OCA and begin making this important
part of our national cultural heritage freely available online,”
said Daniel Greenstein, associate vice provost and University
Librarian for the California Digital Library at the University of
California. “But perhaps more significant is the opportunity that
the OCA provides for UC and other cultural and educational
institutions to actively engage with commercial partners in an open
and consultative process to design a world-class digital library
and educational resource.”

The Open Content Alliance is actively looking for participation
from technology companies, educational and cultural institutions,
and governmental organizations. Library contributions will be
particularly important as a means of building collections and
defining services that meet users’ needs.

“This is an exciting step in the ongoing development of open
access solutions for citizens, students, scholars and researchers
worldwide,” said Ann Wolpert, president of the Association of
Research Libraries. “Working with the OCA, academic and research
libraries can provide greater access to an untold wealth of high
quality, high value materials, contribute expertise in developing
reliable and authoritative collections, and help shape the
structure of online services. Libraries, publishers, educational
institutions, and others must collaborate around initiatives like
the OCA to effectively serve their communities in the 21st century.”

About the University of California libraries

More than 100 libraries on the 10 University of California
campuses support the university’s teaching and research.
Collectively, the UC libraries <
> make up the
largest research/academic library in the world. They include the
California Digital Library <>,
established in 1997 to support the assembly and creative use of
scholarship and knowledge for the UC libraries and the communities
they serve.


Jennifer Colvin, California DigitaLibrary (510) 287-3384

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