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[dupe] Internet Archive ends “emergency library” early to appease publishers (arstechnica.com)
40 points by headalgorithm on June 11, 2020 | hide | past | favorite | 4 comments

Comments mover thither. Thanks!

It's very hard to understand what the Internet Archive thought it was doing with the "emergency library" venture. Whatever you thought of the idea, it was very clear that the concept was on extremely shaky legal ground, and even more clear that publishers weren't going to just sit idly by and do nothing about it. The IA had to have expected a massive lawsuit, one that it most likely would lose, and one which would bankrupt them.

And on top of that, this "emergency library" move has roused the publishing industry into finally attacking the CDL model which they've apparently grudgingly tolerated for a decade.

Why risk their entire existence do this? What was so important about it that it outweighs all the other good work they do?

> The online library argued that this move was necessary—and legally justified—because the pandemic was denying the public access to millions of books that are locked in closed libraries.

I wish that the Internet Archive had tried to work around this by reaching out to public libraries, and having those public libraries agree to "loan" their still-on-the-shelf books to the Internet Archive. That might not cover all the copies that were simultaneously checked out by people (I don't know the numbers involved), but it would have helped.

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