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Q: What is IslandLives?

IslandLives is a project of the Robertson Library at the University of Prince Edward Island. The IslandLives project will digitize approximately 300 published community histories, making them freely available for use via the World Wide Web. IslandLives is actively seeking and securing the permission of copyright holders to display this material online. If you are an author or rights holder for one of Prince Edward Island's community histories and would like to participate in IslandLives, please contact us. The IslandLives project furthers the Robertson Library's mission of preserving and sharing unique material relating to Prince Edward Island with students, educators, researchers, and others interested in Island culture and heritage.

Q: My work is on IslandLives and I haven't given my permission to display it.

IslandLives has done its best to contact the rights holders of works that are included in this collection.

If you are a rights holder of a work and are concerned that you have found a work currently on IslandLives for which you have not given permission, please let us know.

Q: Why include your community history publication in IslandLives?

Over the years, community histories have become one of the most highly-prized and heavily-used elements of the PEI Collection, proving themselves integral to student research and the creation of new writing and scholarship about our Island. We also know, however, that it is difficult for many who could benefit from the knowledge in community histories to find and access this material. Digitization can carry the content of these books beyond the Library’s walls, helping sow the seeds of a new generation of Island teaching and research -- and the creation of new community histories. 

Q: What are the benefits of including my community history publication in IslandLives?

Including your publication in IslandLives will have a number of benefits:

  1. Research
  • Digitization allows students and scholars to easily discover content within publications, allowing for new interpretations, discoveries, and analysis.
  • This digital content can be inter-connected with other data, image, or textual repositories.
  • Digitization can enable the creation of new knowledge.
  1. Preservation
  • Since a digital surrogate is available, the handling of originals is greatly reduced.
  • Digitization can sometimes improve the legability of original texts.
  1. Access
  • As the collection will be web-based, access to this unique collection will be greatly increased. Individuals will be able to search and browse the content of IslandLives.
  • Faculty, teachers, and students will be able to develop and explore themes relating to curriculum areas.
  • Digitization facilitates the sharing of new knowledge with the community.

Q: How will my rights as creator be protected in IslandLives?

Contributing your work to IslandLives in no way represents a relinquishment of your intellectual property rights in this work. One of the most common methods is to retain your copyright and assign a Creative Commons license to the work, making it clear what someone can do with the material. UPEI has selected the "Attribution-Non-Commercial-Share-Alike" Creative Commons license as the standard: this means anyone using the material must attribute the work to the copyright holder (ie. you) and that commercial use must be cleared by the same. All content in the IslandLives collection will carry a statement regarding copyright.

Q: My community history is still for sale. Won't digitizing it and making it available through IslandLives impact my sales?

Digitization can be seen as a way to advertise the print medium. 

The journal Nature reports that Amazon gains additional sales from their 'search inside the book' feature.  In addition, other publishers like the National Academies Press and the Brookings Institute have both seen an increase in sales for their print versions, when they've offered the digital version online for free. Other publishers are taking notice: in the past year alone, companies as diverse as Bloomsbury and the University of Pittsburgh Press have launched major initiatives to make digital versions of many new and backlist titles freely available on-line. Publishing giant HarperCollins, meanwhile, has just reported that its first foray into free on-line “giveaways” of selected books was followed by increased print sales of those same titles (Publishers Weekly; 6/9/2008, Vol. 255 Issue 23, p6-6, 1/2p).

So, if your community history is still in print and for sale, we would be happy to point to it from the IslandLives record so that new customers can discover and purchase your publication.

Q: Who can I contact for more information?

Please contact Donald Moses for further information.

email: dmoses@upei.ca
telephone: 902-566-0460