DPLA and HathiTrust Launch Partnership

Yesterday the Digital Public Library of America launched a partnership with HathiTrust, marrying the preservation mission of one with the access strengths of the other. The partnership will have the DPLA—itself only a couple of months post-launch—employ HathiTrust’s metadata to improve discoverability of and access to that content in HathiTrust that is in the public domain or otherwise freely available. HathiTrust’s own discovery and access platform will continue to develop as well. As has been noted previously here and elsewhere, HathiTrust preserves a fair amount of content useful for legal research.

Details of the partnership are in yesterday’s launch announcement:

According to HathiTrust Executive Director John Wilkin, the partnership reflects the complementary nature of the two organizations. “The first priority of HathiTrust has always been preservation,” he said. “But to fulfill the preservation mission, we must provide access: content that can’t be found and used risks being forgotten.”…DPLA puts HathiTrust’s collection before a broader audience, alongside innovative search and use tools, including timelines, maps, and a growing number of apps.

Of HathiTrust’s nearly 11 million volumes, the metadata records associated with the almost 3.5 million that are freely available will be accessible on the web at dp.la, and through the DPLA application programming interface (API), making HathiTrust a DPLA “content hub.” (The digitized volumes themselves will continue to reside in HathiTrust.


The HathiTrust metadata will be contributed under the terms of a Creative Commons “CC0” license, and Wilkin cites the support of OCLC, the worldwide library cooperative, for the contribution of records possibly derived from its WorldCat database.

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