Could I ask for a book?

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Could I ask for a book?

Postby Create » 03 Jan 2011, 02:40

Good day to all the members of Community!
I've been long searching for this kind of website, because I'm not a native English speaker, and I know foreign websites less than ours. I am myself a book-scanner and in our country I scan books every day and then upload them to a national torrent-tracker for free - the number of books for 9 months is now fastly approaching the number of 150. I like this hobby of mine, and I also accept book orders and people often ask me for help - so I go to the library and take the necessary book.
Now, why do I adress you? You are the Community of Scanners, as I thought. I've searched the forum, but did not find a thread where one might ask for a book to be scanned. The other day I've been absolutely astonished how many books are being published in America, or Great Britain, or generally in the West. I am myself very fond of literature and literary criticism and everything connected with it, and so, when I see those interesting books, the impossibility to get them drives me mad. So the only chance I could ever see them is in the form of a e-book. But there must be some volunteers, so I thought, who do scan books. And now I seem to have found them - YOU.
Now I'd like to ask you humbly - is there a possibility that someone responds me? There is one I book I hanker for, but there will surely be some others.
Probably there wasn't a thread on requests, because you, Americans, didn't need them, because you've got everything in your libraries. But I am not granted such a pleasure - therefore I ask you for help. Is someone ready to scan the following book:
Baird, James. Ishmael: A Study of the Symbolic Mode in Primitivism. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1956

I'd be extremely happy if anyone agreed.
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Re: Could I ask for a book?

Postby rob » 03 Jan 2011, 09:59

I hate to say it, but no, we can't. Because the book was published in 1956 in the U.S., that means it is still under copyright, and it would be illegal for us to copy it. We can scan it for our own personal library, but we can't scan it and then send it to someone else. That's the real reason there isn't a thread for requests -- either a book is under copyright, so it would be illegal for us to copy it, or the book is out of copyright, and then there are other places for that, such as Project Gutenberg or Distributed Proofreaders. Insert standard rant about perpetual copyrights here.

Is there any chance you could purchase the book? Even with international mail, $1.88 can't be that much...

Sorry for the bad news :(
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Re: Could I ask for a book?

Postby Create » 03 Jan 2011, 12:54

First of all, thank you for a reply!

But my spirit sank, of course... I would reject the idea, if there were no questions left, but there are some, so I ask.
1) What's the big idea of scanning and not SENDING a book to anyone? Who will know if you scanned a book, and then sent me - on my email. What's wrong with that, if only you and me know about it?
2) How do then the latest books find their place on gigapedia or other sources? Some people do scan them, don't they? Why can't you? I don't ask you to upload a book on to the Internet, you could just send it to me, could you not?

Sorry, I'm still struggling to see the book... Purchasing the book is the last thing I'd turn to, sorry.
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Re: Could I ask for a book?

Postby rob » 03 Jan 2011, 16:33

The problem is U.S. law. We can't suggest that people scan books under copyright and then copy the result, or else we will be considered to be "inducing infringement", which is illegal in the U.S. Sorry, but that's how it is. We can't stop people from doing whatever they want, but in order to remain within U.S. law, we also can't suggest they do things that are illegal under U.S. law.
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Re: Could I ask for a book?

Postby Create » 03 Jan 2011, 17:59

I see... if there'll occur any other possibility, (or appear some people willing to help) please, inform me at (email removed by moderator rob)
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Re: Could I ask for a book?

Postby daniel_reetz » 03 Jan 2011, 18:55

Create, as the moderators of this forum, Rob and I have a strong interest in protecting it from legal attacks. We simply can't have such requests here, as Rob explained, and I'm going to ask that you also remove your email address from that post, please. People here know how to use private messages and you can list your email in your profile. More than that is simply unnecessary.

Now that we've explained our position, I hope that people will refrain from posts of this nature in the future. Don't take that the wrong way. I -- and many people here -- believe that copyright law desperately needs reform, or perhaps needs to be totally ripped out and re-thought, and that in fact, it has no place in the technological world of today. But that doesn't exempt us from being punished under it while it still exists.
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Re: Could I ask for a book?

Postby rob » 03 Jan 2011, 21:41

Create wrote:How do then the latest books find their place on gigapedia or other sources?


Ah, that is a very good question! As Dan has said in his talks, those are not scanned images, but somehow liberated directly from the publisher. In other words, not by people like us, or even remotely like us!
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Re: Could I ask for a book?

Postby Shaknum » 03 Jan 2011, 23:12

You can get that book used for $1.88 (plus shipping) here: http://www.alibris.com/search/books/qwork/3358500/used/Ishmael%20%3A%20a%20study%20of%20the%20symbolic%20mode%20in%20primitivism.. I don't know what kind of a deal you could get with shipping, but you couldn't ask for a cheaper price. Although I do understand that cheap by United States standards does not always translate across the world.
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Re: Could I ask for a book?

Postby StevePoling » 04 Jan 2011, 20:32

rob wrote:I hate to say it, but no, we can't. Because the book was published in 1956 in the U.S., that means it is still under copyright, and it would be illegal for us to copy it.


This may be a meaningless distinction, but... US law does not make it illegal to copy this book, merely that the copyright holder retains exclusive rights of publication. Were we able to secure permission from the copyright holder to scan and distribute electronic copies, Uncle Sam would have no beef with us. If the copyright holder is not inclined to object, we have a green light. (Like when the Spartans once said to Alexandre the Great, "If", this is a huge if.)

I've been thinking for some time that it might be good to go track down copyright holders of out-of-print works and seek permission. It doesn't hurt to ask. Many writers would prefer that their work circulate than sit unread. Often rights revert to the author, and in such cases I think we'd have a shot at permission.
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Re: Could I ask for a book?

Postby rob » 06 Jan 2011, 11:09

StevePoling wrote:I've been thinking for some time that it might be good to go track down copyright holders of out-of-print works and seek permission. It doesn't hurt to ask. Many writers would prefer that their work circulate than sit unread. Often rights revert to the author, and in such cases I think we'd have a shot at permission.


You can ask, it really is your only recourse if you plan to stay legal. However, there is a saying: "It's easy to say 'No.'"

999 times out of 1000, an individual author will tell you that they don't want their works copied freely. And 1000 out of 1000 times, a publisher will tell you not to copy.

And then there was that whole Google settlement thing, which I guess began as an idea to free works where the copyright owner couldn't be located, but sort of metastasized.
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