January 20, 2022

New Issue Brief: “Finding the Public: Domain The Copyright Review Management System”

A new Ithaka S+R issue brief, Finding the Public: Domain The Copyright Review Management System, written by Melissa Levine. Lead Copyright Officer, University of Michigan and is now available online in both HTML and PDF formats.

Roger Schonfeld, Director, Libraries and Scholarly Communication Program at ITHAKA S+R, writes in an introductory blog post:

Open Access Week is a particularly appropriate time to reflect on the many different ways to expand access. Appropriately, new publishing and distribution models for the scholarly and scientific literature will be the subject of much discussion. Existing library collections of journals, books, newspapers, and government documents also contain substantial amounts of public domain material, and as Melissa Levine reminds us in her issue brief we are releasing today, “The public domain is the ultimate open access.”

Levine has spearheaded the largest and most comprehensive review ever undertaken of the copyright status of diverse-source publications. The Copyright Review Management System (CRMS), funded by IMLS, administered by the University of Michigan, and targeting the content of HathiTrust, is a remarkable project. Over a period of eight years, CRMS developed review protocols for the US and other Anglophone countries, built a distributed process for implementing the protocols, and coordinated an effort that examined half a million volumes. From this effort, some 330,000 volumes were determined to be in the public domain, allowing HathiTrust to unlock public access to them. CRMS has been a truly landmark effort to populate our digital public domain.


Source: Finding the Public: Domain The Copyright Review Management System (ITHAKA S+R; 2016)

Direct to Full Text of Finding the Public: Domain The Copyright Review Management System.

Additional Resources

Melissa Levine also a co-authored, Finding the Public Domain: Copyright Review Management System Toolkit that was released in June and mentioned on infoDOCKET at that time. 

VIDEO:  How the HathiTrust Copyright Review Program Works (March 2016)

HathiTrust’s Copyright Review Management System (CRMS) Wins ALA Copyright Award

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) 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 Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.