Archive for April, 2008

Course readers and fair use

Wednesday, April 16th, 2008

Do you compile course readers or course packs for your classes?  Think this is clearly fair use where copyright is concerned?  Well, take a look at this development, taken from Peter Suber’s open access blog:

Are digital course packs fair use?

via Open Access News by Peter Suber on 4/16/08

Katie Hafner, Publishers Sue Georgia State on Digital Reading Matter, New York Times, April 16, 2008.  Excerpt:

Three prominent academic publishers are suing Georgia State University, contending that the school is violating copyright laws by providing course reading material to students in digital format without seeking permission from the publishers or paying licensing fees.

In a complaint filed Tuesday in United States District Court in Atlanta, the publishers — Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press and Sage Publications — sued four university officials, asserting “systematic, widespread and unauthorized copying and distribution of a vast amount of copyrighted works” by Georgia State, which the university distributes through its Web site.

The lawsuit…may be the first of its kind….

The case centers on so-called course packs, compilations of reading materials from various books and journals. The lawsuit contends that in many cases, professors are providing students with multiple chapters of a given work, in violation of the “fair use” provision of copyright law. The publishers are seeking an order that the defendants secure permissions and pay licensing fees to the copyright owners….

R. Bruce Rich, a partner in the law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges, which is representing the plaintiffs, said that…Georgia State officials “indicated their view that all of their practices are covered under the fair use doctrine.” …

Legal precedents exist for cases involving course packs from photocopied material, but experts say the lawsuit against Georgia State is the first to be filed over electronic course packs….

“Publishers have created a market for course materials that is very similar to the market for luxury goods,” said [Susan Crawford, visiting professor at Yale Law School]. “There is only one version available, and at a very high price.” …

“In academic publishing, we need to find the digital services people really want,” said Brewster Kahle, founder of the Internet Archive, a nonprofit digital library based in San Francisco. “I wonder if this will turn out to be an ‘attack the innovator’ suit like the peer-to-peer suits for the music industry. Sometimes a bit of slack can help us all discover a winning formula.”

Comment.  This is not about OA, so I won’t be covering the case in detail.  It’s about TA and the fair use of TA literature.  But there are several reasons why I wanted to cover the first appearance of what will clearly be an important case.  (1) I want to set myself up to blog future twists and turns, or commentary, with strong OA connections.  (2) The case may show how far photocopying precedents will be applied to digitization cases.  (3) The case could change or clarify fair use for non-commercial educational purposes.  Any such change or clarification would affect fair use for TA literature, but also fair use for free online literature that had removed price barriers but not permission barriers.  (4) It may show the weight of the first fair-use factor (“the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes“) relative to the fourth (“the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work”), or in short, the relative weight of university interests and publisher interests. 

Spring quarter workshops for graduate students

Friday, April 4th, 2008

Graduate Student Library Workshops – Spring 2008

The Library and the Graduate Writing Center both offer graduate students helpful workshops on a variety of research- and writing-related topics. Listed here and online are the ones offered by the Library in various locations. The Graduate Writing Center’s workshop schedule is also available online. The workshops are open; some sessions request an RSVP. Please see details in the workshop description.

Access to Chinese Electronic Resources
Hands-on seminar series covers important Chinese electronic resources, with emphasis on remote access to various online databases related to East Asian studies.  For registration and questions, contact Hong Cheng at chengh at library dot ucla dot edu or 310.206.9606.
Research Library East Electronic Classroom, YRL 21536  (2 hours)
Friday, April 11: 1:30 p.m.

This session offers a basic overview of the purpose, uses, and features of EndNote, a program that helps researchers manage references and produce bibliographies for projects large and small.
Research Library East Electronic Classroom, YRL 21536  (90 minutes)
Monday, April 14: 2 p.m.

It’s All About the Numbers – Using Data and Statistics for Research
Join us for a workshop on how to find and use data and statistics effectively in research papers and coursework.
Research Library East Electronic Classroom, YRL 21536  (1 hour)
Wednesday, April 16, 1 p.m.

Copyright and Permissions Issues: What You Need to Know to File
This workshop will explain permissions and copyright issues related to filing theses and dissertations. It will cover how to use work that you have already published, when to obtain permissions for using works published by others, and whether using visuals requires permissions. The workshop will also offer practical advice on how to request permissions and copyright your own thesis. Please bring your questions!
Research Library East Electronic Classroom, YRL 21536  (90 minutes)
Thursday, April 17, 4 p.m.

Access to Japanese Electronic Resources
Hands-on seminar series covers important Japanese electronic resources, with emphasis on remote access to various online databases related to East Asian studies. For registration and questions, contact Hong Cheng at chengh at library dot ucla dot edu or 310.206.9606.
Research Library East Electronic Classroom, YRL 21536  (2 hours)
Friday, April 18, 2 p.m.

Access to Korean Electronic Resources
Hands-on seminar series covers important Korean electronic resources, with emphasis on remote access to various online databases related to East Asian studies. For registration and questions, contact Hong Cheng at chengh at library dot ucla dot edu or 310.206.9606.
Research Library East Electronic Classroom, YRL 21536  (90 minutes)
Friday, April 25, 1:30 p.m. 

Access to East Asian Studies non-CJK Electronic Resources
This hands-on workshop will focus primarily on English-language electronic resources for East Asian Studies.
Research Library East Electronic Classroom, YRL 21536  (60 minutes)
Friday, May 2, 11 a.m.

Citation and Academic Integrity Issues for Graduate Students
Common research and writing situations often present complex questions related to citation and paraphrasing.  In support of maintaining academic integrity, this workshop will offer practical guidance for citing sources and using information ethically.
Conference Room 4, Student Activities Center (basement level) (90 minutes)
Tuesday, May 6, 4 p.m.

ARTstor Basics
ARTstor is a digital image library with a set of tools to view, present, and manage images for research and pedagogical purposes. This workshop, geared for researchers engaged with the visual arts, architecture, humanities and social sciences, will introduce the basic features of ARTstor: searching, browsing, sorting, and displaying images, creating image groups and shared folders, and exporting images and citations.  (2 hours)
Research Library East Electronic Classroom, YRL 21536
Monday, May 12, 2 p.m. 

Research Appointments
Graduate students are welcome to contact the Library’s subject specialists any time for further assistance with research, library resources, and subject databases. See the library website for a list of subject specialists.

NEW RESOURCE: Burney newspapers online

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

UCLA Library is pleased to announce that it has just licensed the digital version of the 17th and 18th Century Burney Collection Newspapers, thanks to the collective efforts of the Research Library, the Center for 17th- and 18th-Century Studies/Clark Library, as well as our good friends in the History and English departments. Here’s the description from the vendor’s website:

The newspapers, pamphlets, and books gathered by the Reverend Charles Burney (1757-1817) represent the largest and most comprehensive collection of early English news media. The present digital collection, that helps chart the development of the concept of ‘news’ and ‘newspapers’ and the “free press”, totals almost 1 million pages and contains approximately 1,270 titles. Many of the Burney newspapers are well known, but many pamphlets and broadsides also included have remained largely hidden. Newly digitized, all Burney treasures are now fully text-searchable in Gale Digital Collection.

The easiest way to access Burney is to go to the Library’s home page ( and follow these steps:

1. mouse over Search and find
2. scroll down to E-Resources and click
3. Type “burney” in the search box (as a keyword)
4. Click on the *long* Burney url

Keep in mind that access is limited to UCLA IP addresses.  Let me know what you think of this new resource!

Open Humanities Press events – last minute details

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

In a previous post, I announced the launch of Open Humanities Press, an open access initiative to publish rigorously peer-reviewed contemporary critical and cultural theory.  If you happen to be in Irvine tomorrow (4/3/08) or in Santa Barbara on Friday (4/4/08), drop in to one of the following OHP talks:

Sigi Jottkandt, “Open Humanities Press: Free Libre Scholarship”
Gary Hall, “Liquid Theory (thanks to open access and the humanities, what could take place tomorrow)”

University of California, Irvine
Thursday, April 3, 2008 from 3:00-4:30 PM in 135 Humanities Instructional Building

University of California, Santa Barbara
Friday April 4, 2008 from 4:30PM in South Hall 2709 (the Transcriptions Studio)

Shakespeare plays coming soon on the web

Tuesday, April 1st, 2008

Just passing along news published recently in RTÉ of an upcoming Shakespeare resource on the web:

Libraries to create Shakespeare web resource

The Bodleian Library in Oxford and the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington DC are to put all 75 editions of William Shakespeare’s plays from before 1641 online.

The quartos are the earliest printed editions of the plays and are the closest to what Shakespeare actually wrote still in existence.

The project is intended to give the public greater acccess to the plays and downloading of the quartos will begin next month.

Online users will be able to compare and study the texts, which are the earliest sources for the 37 plays Shakespeare is known to have written.

“There will be countless new ways for scholars, teachers, and students to examine the quarto texts, particularly of ‘Hamlet’,” Folger library director Gail Kern Paster told Reuters.

“You find out all sorts of things – about how the copies went through the press, and also about the printing process,” she added.