OCLC copyright evidence registry

OCLC is piloting a new service for libraries that encourages librarians and other interested parties to discover and share information about the copyright status of books.

The WorldCat Copyright Evidence Registry does not provide conclusions or assertions about the copyright status of a book. Instead, it provides the information, tools, and community to help you conduct your copyright status investigation and form your own conclusions. It also lets you and others in the community share your conclusions.

So hop over to the Registry Pilot, create a free WorldCat account and have a look. A quick take:

  • Creative Commons licences are supported as copyright information, yet their integration could be optimised with CC+ and a licence chooser, to make sure that OCLC receives machine readable data. Now, you just type in free-form CC licence descriptions and no proper ccREL can be built from that.
  • No sharing of data. Unfortunately, OCLC harvests the rights of those contributing. The terms of use allow hardly any re-use: no mining, no caching, no distribution. There are also some fancy (cardcatalog?) rules like it’s forbidden to “make more than one (1) copy per screen display;”

This is a pilot which rests on the solid basis of 100 million item WorldCat database and has the potential to be a highly relevant source for copyright information evidence.

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