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Books in 2025: The Future of the Book World

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12wonderY
Sep 11, 3:39pm Top

From Vice Motherboard today

Libraries and Archivists Are Scanning and Uploading Books That Are Secretly in the Public Domain

A coalition of archivists, activists, and libraries are working overtime to make it easier to identify the many books that are secretly in the public domain, digitize them, and make them freely available online to everyone. The people behind the effort are now hoping to upload these books to the Internet Archive, one of the largest digital archives on the internet.

2elenchus
Edited: Sep 12, 9:20am Top

From the article:
But a copyright loophole means that up to 75 percent of books published between 1923 to 1964 are secretly in the public domain, meaning they are free to read and copy. The problem is determining which books these are, due to archaic copyright registration systems and convoluted and shifting copyright law. {...} Historically, it’s been fairly easy to tell whether a book published between 1923 and 1964 had its copyright renewed, because the renewal records were already digitized. But proving that a book hadn’t had its copyright renewed has historically been more difficult, New York Public Library Senior Product Manager Sean Redmond said.

Very Doublespeak that neologism, "secretly in the public domain".

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