When arguing in favour of the unbeatable experience of print, many point to the manifestations of human interaction which leave their marks on books in a way that will never be possible on e-Readers. While Google Books has often been cited as a key threat in the digital divide, Krissy Wilson’s magnificent blog celebrates and showcases the weird and wonderful ways the “mark of the hand” can be seen on the scanned titles.
This ranges from notes, doodles, hand-coloured panels and even violent redactions and profanities, to glitches in the digitisation prices itself; technicians’ fingers, bastardised diagrams and compromised images. Torn corners of bookmarks, an airline boarding pass and a pink-crayon scrawl over a love poem, all support Krissy’s assertion that: “The diverse, startling adversaria of Google Books merits examination and exhibition.”
“The aim of this project is twofold;” she says, “to recognize book digitisation as rephotography, and to value the signs of use that accompany digitised texts as worthy of documentation and study.”