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Google Print Meets European Print

David Utter
Expert Author
Published: 2005-05-06

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Cultural concerns in Europe over Google's plan to put several well-known libraries online trigger a rival effort.

Europe has history while America has geography; a comic-book thought that nonetheless seems to be the opinion of some Europeans.

Google plans to scan millions of books from libraries like Harvard's and Oxford's, a lengthy task for certain.

Then those works would be available online, to anyone with Internet access. But the thought of that much Anglo-American articulation available annoys a number of European leaders.

The president of the French National Library sees a danger there, according to an interview with Associated Press.

"I think that this could lead to an imbalance to the benefit of a mainly Anglo-Saxon view of the world," Jean-Noel Jeanneney said in an interview. "I think this is a danger."

Paranoia? Possibly. Still, the French and five other countries see a need to digitize their own libraries, to preserve works created in non-English languages.

The possibility exists that Google and its Continental critics could work together. Members of Google Print visited Paris to meet with library officials to discuss potential inclusion into the search engine's efforts.



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