Monday, October 22, 2007

Photo of digitization lab being used by Open Content Alliance

In this New York Times article is a photo of a digitization lab being used by the Open Content Alliance. The lab contains 10 book scanning machines, which are all visible in the photo.

I always look for little tidbits of info in these articles that are different that what I've seen before. Brewster Kahle has said that they can scan books at a cost of $10 each. However, this article states:
It costs the Open Content Alliance as much as $30 to scan each book, a cost shared by the group’s members and benefactors...
Who pays for the digitization?

Libraries that sign with the Open Content Alliance are obligated to pay the cost of scanning the books. Several have received grants from organizations like the Sloan Foundation.

The Boston Library Consortium’s project is self-funded, with $845,000 for the next two years. The consortium pays 10 cents a page to the Internet Archive, which has installed 10 scanners at the Boston Public Library. Other members include the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Brown University.

We also get updated information on the number of organizations participating in OCA's book digitization efforts:
The group includes more than 80 libraries and research institutions, including the Smithsonian Institution.
The article is mainly about the difference in the agreements Google and the OCA are signing with the libraries. The OCA agreements have fewer restrictions on how the libraries use their digital copies. Google, for example, insists that copies cannot be used with another commercial service, but does allow the books to be rescanned and then used more broadly.

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1 comment:

Ben said...

In the recent Library Journal article, Brewster Kahle said digitization costs 10 cents per page. Assuming a length of 300 pages, $30 per book sounds consistent to me.