The Shifted Librarian - Shifting Libraries at the speed of byte
 Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Google Print Gaffes

On the WEB4LIB mailing list this morning, George S. Porter points to a CNN/Money article that says Google Opens Book Search Service. Roy Tennant then points to Google's own information page about Google Print. Basically, they're displaying links at the top of search results for books that will let you view specific pages from within the title.

Of course, there's always a catch with this kind of "automated" help. Roy suggested that a search for Huckleberry Finn would display one of these new Google Print links, and I'm sure he deliberately chose this example because the Google link takes you to the Max Notes version of HF, not the book itself (which, of course, is available for free from the Electronic Text Center at the University of Virginia and Project Gutenberg).

And the saddest part of this whole thing is that Google was the first search engine to work with Open WorldCat to display library holdings in search results, but nary a WorldCat link is to be found in the first 10 hits. Nor is it in the first 50 hits. Further proof, as if we needed it, that Google just doesn't play nicely with structured data, which in this case sends the message that the Max Notes and Spark Notes are more important than library copies of the book itself.

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