HathiTrust ETAS Frequently Asked Questions

What is HathiTrust ETAS?

HathiTrust is a membership-based non-profit that offers digital access to public domain volumes. Members can also search an additional 11 million volumes for keywords and phrases. As members of HathiTrust, Western Libraries has signed on to their Emergency Temporary Access Service (HathiTrust ETAS).

HathiTrust ETAS increases remote collections access at a time when physical collections are inaccessible due to unexpected and temporary circumstances. For Western Libraries, COVID-19 restrictions have meant that students and faculty are mainly working off-campus and that on-site library materials cannot be accessed. By implementing this temporary digital service, Western Libraries ensures the greatest access to materials for the largest number of people possible.

Why can’t I access a physical copy of the text I want?

The books included in HathiTrust ETAS are made available in accordance with copyright law. This requires that if only one physical copy was purchased by the library, then only one copy can be made available for use. If a digitized version of a book is available through HathiTrust ETAS, the print version cannot also be made available.

Why can’t I download/print a book in HathiTrust ETAS?

To honour copyright requirements, HathiTrust ETAS offers read-only access. This means you can read the whole book online, but you cannot download or print any part of it.

How do I renew my book in HathiTrust ETAS?

The loan period for materials through HathiTrust ETAS is 1 hour. As long as you are still using your book it will automatically renew for another hour. If you do not remain active (i.e., you have not loaded a new page for an hour or if you leave the page), the digital book will be released for use by others.

Can I recall or put a hold on a HathiTrust ETAS item?

No. The loan period for a HathiTrust ETAS item is 1 hour and automatically renews as long as it is in use. If you need a book that is checked out, you have to check back periodically to see if it has become available.

Can I still make requests for digital delivery through Omni?

Absolutely! Requests for digitization of chapters or articles is still within copyright provisions. Review how to make a request for digital delivery.

What if I need an alternative format from what HathiTrust ETAS provides?

If you are vision-impaired or print-disabled and need access to a title that is unavailable through HathiTrust ETAS or the Library Catalogue, please let us know.

Why aren’t all of Western Libraries’ items available through HathiTrust ETAS?

Approximately 30 per cent of Western Libraries’ holdings are available through HathiTrust ETAS. If one of our items is not available through the digital service, it is because there is no digitized version of that item in the HathiTrust database.

I have physical copies of HathiTrust ETAS items on loan from the library, can I renew them?

No. Once your initial loan period expires, you cannot renew physical books that are part of the HathiTrust ETAS catalogue. This is to ensure Western Libraries complies with our terms of agreement with HathiTrust ETAS.

According to my Omni search, Western Libraries has this book, so why isn’t it appearing?

If you clicked on a link to HathiTrust ETAS in Omni but it won’t allow you to access the book, first make sure it is not currently checked out by another user.

If the digital book is not checked out and you still can’t access it, there is a glitch in the system. Please email library@uwo.ca.

How do I report an illegible page?

If you cannot read a page or pages within a HathiTrust ETAS book due to their illegibility, please email library@uwo.ca.

What if I have other questions or concerns?

Please visit the HathiTrust website for additional information on their services or email library@uwo.ca.