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Google Print goes live in Australia

Thursday, 01 September 2005
By Print 21 Online Article

Google Print Australia, initially dogged with controversy relating to copyright issues, is now available for public use at print.google.com.au. The initiative extends Google’s search engine by facilitating registered users to search the contents of an undisclosed number of books scanned into the database.

While the entire contents of books in the public domain can be browsed throughout, Google Print Australia directs users to a range of online bookstores for publications under copyright restrictions. Retailers currently available to Australian users include Dymocks, Angus & Robertson, and Booktopia.com.au.

Google insists its new service will draw attention to the printed word rather than erode public interest, billing it as a great opportunity for publishers. “Our ultimate goal is to work with publishers and libraries to create a comprehensive, searchable, next-generation card catalogue of all books in all languages, that helps users discover new books and publishers find new readers.”

Google has been scanning books into its print database in the USA since late last year when the service was initially revealed, and is currently working with the University of Michigan, Harvard University, Stanford University, New York Public Library and Oxford University to make their collections available online. According to reports, over 200 titles from UNSW Press have already been scanned into the Google Print Australia database.

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