The British Library Delivers Over 1 Billion Items Via the Web

Jun 10, 2003

The British Library has announced its new secure Electronic Delivery service, harnessing the strength of the British Library's collections and giving customers fast access to over a billion items. For customers this means that almost anything from the Library's collections--whether born digital, in print, or in microform--can be delivered to a desktop within two hours if needed, saving time and money. Unlike many suppliers, the Library holds the vast majority of the items listed in its catalogues, with most available for secure electronic delivery. The secure Electronic Delivery service, fully available from Fall 2003, is based on Adobe Reader 6.0 software and Relais International scanning and delivery technology. Since the Library launched the fully copyright compliant secure electronic delivery service in December 2002, it has succeeded in obtaining extensive agreements for secure electronic delivery with many scientific publishers. The addition of scanning technology to the Library's services means that, from Fall 2003, it will be able to supply virtually all of the materials listed in its catalogues--as well as from its Inside electronic table of contents service--via secure electronic delivery direct to the researcher's PC. The Library's collections include: 283,000 journal titles, 3 million books, 433,000 conference proceedings, 5 million reports, 150,000 UK theses, 476,000 US dissertations, 585,000 translations, 47 million patents, and 10,000 pictures. Customers will be able to choose from a range of delivery options, with secure electronic delivery available within two hours of ordering if needed. Investment in specially adapted digital scanning stations means the Library can provide high resolution electronic documents, while the addition of high speed Xerox printers ensures quality hard-copy documents for postal delivery.

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