I saw this on the OCLC-CAT e-list. I think it is quite a fascinating use of social networking, and particularly relevant for law.
OCLC is hosting a Webinar to introduce the WorldCat Copyright Evidence Registry (CER) pilot on Wednesday, October 15, 2008 from 2:00 to 3:00 ET. Please register for the Webinar at https://www3.oclc.org/app/request/bin/request.asp?specialCode=CER08Oct.
OCLC has launched a pilot to explore the feasibility of building a cooperatively created and maintained repository of copyright evidence. The WorldCat Copyright Evidence Registry is a community working together to build a union catalog of copyright evidence based on WorldCat metadata, additional information contributed by libraries and by other interested organizations.
Digitization projects continue for books in the public domain, but books whose copyright status is unknown are destined to remain in print and on shelves until their status can be determined. The process to determine copyright status can be lengthy and labor intensive. The goal of the Copyright Evidence Registry is to encourage a cooperative environment to discover, create and share copyright evidence through a collaboratively created and maintained database, using the WorldCat cooperative model to eliminate duplicate efforts.
The CER beta is searchable today at http://www.worldcat.org/copyrightevidence. More information about the CER beta and the pilot can be found at http://www.oclc.org/us/en/productworks/cer.htm.
Bill Carney, OCLC
email: carneyb at oclc.org