Wednesday, May 27, 2009

SharedBook Launches Platform Supporting Google Book Search Discussion has launched a site that enables stakeholders and the public at large to annotate the Google Book Settlement and other related documents. The website leverages the company's editorial platform so that users can match comments and annotations directly to the locations in the text to which the comments pertain. This technology is already in use with some of SharedBook's clients and users of the GBS application of this tool can also print the official documents together with any comments they think important. These comments can be both their own as well as those of the community. Here is an excerpt from their press release:
Until now, discussions on the Google Book Settlement have been taking place across fragmented forums. Now, for the first time, policymakers, businesspeople, scholars, journalists and others have the opportunity to come together and engage in a granular, contextual dialogue on this important topic. Our platform supports comments and responsive statements in real-time, linking them directly to the Google Book Settlement and accompanying documents through online footnoting, always preserving the original documents in their original form. As a result, the Google Book Settlement site becomes an informed and transparent analysis of key points of the settlement by its most concerned stakeholders, available to anyone on the Web.

The platform also offers a compilation and print capability, allowing books to be created from the content with any combination of annotations, which appear in the book as footnotes. We invite all interested parties to participate in this discussion, and to be a part of the debate on this very important subject.
Visit the website here.


David Rothman (Teleread) also comments on this announcement and makes a statement that I believe indicates exactly the promise of this SharedBook application:
The obvious questions: What annotation sites exist to let anyone mark up federal documents here in the States? Elsewhere? Any sites from governments themselves? And via APIs, standards and in other ways, just how can governments foster the growth of such sites? Also, what about the issue of special interest groups using the sites without identifying themselves? What place is there for anonymous comments? What to do about deliberate information? And how does the media fit in, given all the enticing linking possibilities? The issues go on and on.

No comments: