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HathiTrust: Additional Information and Help

Why HathiTrust?

There's an Elephant in the Library!

Freshworks Logo

Hathi (pronounced hah-tee) means elephant in Hindi, symbolizing memory, wisdom, and strength.

These ideals, plus creating a lasting trust for the future, express what HathiTrust stands for and how its members benefit.

Texas State  University joined HathiTrust in May, 2018

HathiTrust News

Hathi Trust has monthly newsletters and updates

Anyone can subscribe to these via e-mail. 

HathiTrust Lawsuit

In September, 2011, HathiTrust was sued by the Authors Guild and others.  The primary issue that brought about this suit at this time was the Orphan Works Project.  The Association of Research Libraries has produced a document, "Resource Packet on Orphan Works: Legal and Policy Issues for Research Libraries", which provides general "information concerning orphan works, the University of Michigan’s Orphan Works Project, an FAQ, and a legal memorandum by Jonathan Band (policybandwidth) describing the legal issues associated with making orphan works digitally available." 

The case was finally decided in 2013.    In the end, courts found that Hathi Trust digitization practices fell within the "fair use" provisions of U.S. copyright law. 

About HathiTrust

HathiTrust was established in 2008 with the mission to "contribute to the common good by collecting, organizing, preserving, communicating and sharing the record of human knowledge."  The original HathiTrust libraries were partners with Google and/or the Internet Archive for the digitization of books in their collections.  In part, HathiTrust was created so these libraries could work collaboratively to manage, provide access to, and preserve their digital assets in ways that Google could not.  The primary goals of HathiTrust include:

  • Building a reliable and increasingly comprehensive digital archive of library materials converted from print that is co-owned and managed by a number of academic institutions.
  • Improving, dramatically, access to these materials in ways that, first and foremost, meet the needs of the co-owning institutions – i.e. research institutions.
  • Helping preserve these physical materials by creating reliable and accessible electronic representations.
  • Stimulating efforts to coordinate shared storage strategies among libraries, thus reducing long-term capital and operating costs associated with the storage and care of print collections.
  • Creating and sustaining this “public good” in a way that mitigates the problem of "free-riders". 
  • Creating a technical framework that is both responsive to members through the centralized creation of functionality and sufficiently open to the creation of tools and services not created by the central organization.

New content is added to HathiTrust, daily.  At this time, there is no convenient way to see lists of the new content.  However, compressed files of the content that has been added are made available daily, displaying in reverse chronological order.

Additional resources and guides are available from HathiTrust. 

    University Libraries


    Special thanks to-

    Billie Peterson-Lugo   Director, Digital Library Services & Systems at Baylor University

    For permission to adapt her Libguide for use at Texas State.