We are excited to share that anyone anywhere can now access a growing online collection of contemporary open access eBooks from the Library of Congress website. For example, you can now directly access books such as Cory Doctorow’s Little Brother, Yochai Benkler’s The Wealth of Networks, and Youjeong Oh’s Pop City: Korean Popular Culture and the Selling of Place from the Library of Congress website. All of these books have been made broadly available online in keeping with the intent of their creators and publishers, which chose to publish these works under open access licenses.
A key objective of the Library of Congress digital collecting plan is the development and implementation of an acquisitions program for openly available content. We have previously discussed a number of open access book projects, including open access Latin American books, and open access children’s books. Significantly, the Library of Congress has long been receiving print copies of open access books through multiple routine acquisition streams. These openly licensed works can be made much more broadly accessible in their digital form.
These books are the result of a pilot effort of the Digital Content Management Section (DCM). DCM staff, in collaboration with the Collection Development Office (CDO), identified books available through Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB) [emphasis ours] of which the Library already holds a copy in print. DOAB is a digital directory that provides access to academic peer-reviewed books available under open access licenses.
While all the books in DOAB could potentially be considered for addition to the Library of Congress collections, all books added to the collection go through a selection process whereby subject matter experts determine which works are in scope based on the collection policy statements. By identifying matches in DOAB to print holdings of the Library of Congress, we could identify a set of works for which a selection decision had already been made.
We are excited to continue to refine and improve this process. You can find books like these alongside other open access books in the Library’s collection at this link: //www.loc.gov/search/?fa=partof:open+access+books.
- Analyzing DOAB Data
- Processing Open Access eBooks
- Expanding Access and Enhancing Resilience in the Commons