Posted by: erinserb | February 23, 2010

The right balance…..

A level playing field, isn’t that what justice should create?   At American Libraries, a blog has been written (very well I might add) encapsulating the “Google Book Decision”.  

Almost a generation ago (1984), there was a lawsuit which proceeded through the federal courts for years….remember the divestiture of a company called AT&T, MaBell, er..the Bell System – you get the idea.  That decision took nearly 10 years to iron out.  Without it, the telecommunications landscape would not have been much be the same, for it created the ability for many different telecom companies to get a slice of the pie, and usher in new technologies.

Now, a decision which arguably is as big as that of a generation ago is going to be decided.  Only, the aim of this decision will affect the literary record of nearly all mankind.

Although librarians should always be for open access to universal information, in this case, they and the public should be very wary.  It should be no secret as to what Goggle wants.  It, like AT&T many years ago, wants the “whole pie” of the world’s collective information.  I feel that it may even be more sinister than AT&T’s plans, which by the way were for the status quo back then.  Although, I will say that both companies had and have something in common – a strong technology backbone.

The world, I believe (as many librarians like myself do) isn’t ready to  hand over all knowledge to one entity.  Doesn’t that sound like a good movie from the science fiction genre?  In this case, the only thing fictitious about this deal is Google striking “the right balance”.

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