May 16, 2022

From ARL's Policy Notes: "About Those Orphans"

Direct to Brandon Butler’s Post on the ARL Policy Notes Blog

An excellent, “must read” post that discusses things to keep in mind since HathiTrust announced a suspension of the Orphan Works program on Friday.

Butler’s post is organized into six sections:

1. “This kind of input from rightsholders is welcome and helpful”

2. “Fair use and Section 108 apply in many situations even if you find a rightsholder”

3. “Hathi and its partners propose very modest, non-commercial uses that are traditional library uses and are beneficial for authors as well as users”

4. “Finding an author on Wikipedia ≠ finding a work’s rights holder”

5. “The search should be reasonable given the circumstances, and it will never be perfect”

6. “Threatening to unplug the HathiTrust is extremely shortsighted and unhelpful”

Direct to Brandon Butler’s Post on the ARL Policy Notes Blog


About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.