Special collections require special care but reproduction of material from our collections is possible in most cases. All requests for reproduction are dependent first of all on the physical condition of the item (tight bindings, fragile or brittle paper, oversize items) as our goal is to preserve the originals for future as well as current use. On occasion reproduction will not be possible because of physical condition, copyright or donor restrictions, or the existence of surrogate copies elsewhere in the University.
We offer a variety of reproduction options depending on the need for which the reproduction is requested (personal use or publication).
Patron self-serve photography
Patrons may make use of the onsite book2net kiosk overhead scanner to digitize items from the Fisher collections for study and research purposes. Images are generated in jpeg, pdf or tiff formats and are saved to a flash drive or memory key. If possible, bring bring your own. We do have a limited number at the reference desk that can be borrowed for the day.) It is free to use. We do not allow patrons to take photographs of the material with their own cameras, including phones.
All digitization is done under the supervision of the Fisher Library staff, who will make decisions on the suitability of the material for scanning, as set out in our Conditions for Patron Photography form; please note that only bound material may be scanned, and not manuscript material.
Requests for filming in the Fisher Library for commercial purposes are considered on a case by case basis; please contact us.
Very limited photocopying services are provided by the library. All photocopying is done by a Fisher staff member in order to minimize damage to the collections. There is a limit of 50 pages per bound volume or manuscript collection. We provide the best possible quality that can be obtained without doing damage to the material. Photocopies are not normally available on demand but we attempt to fill orders as promptly as possible, usually within 24 hours (longer for orders of 50 pages or more). The cost for standard sizes is 25 cents per page.
Digital photography by library staff
Imaging from original materials is carried out by a highly qualified photographer using an overhead camera; files are captured in TIFF format (uncompressed, 8-bit channel of colour) and are sent via a file transfer service such as Hightail. High resolution copies of images posted on our website or on our digital collections pages can be ordered, citing the unique identifier. Turnaround time is generally 3 working days, but that could vary based on size of order. The cost per image is $25.00. Reproduction of audio visual materials is possible on a case-by-case basis; please contact us.
Permission to reproduce
In general permission to copy does not convey the right to reproduce or publish the material. However, in the majority of cases the material in our collections is in the public domain. The Library is committed to broadening access to our materials, therefore we do not charge a rights or use fee, and permission to publish is not required. We request that you cite the source in the form:
The Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, University of Toronto
For unpublished or copyrighted material patrons are responsible for obtaining appropriate rights, including ascertaining the applicable copyright, donor, privacy, and other legal requirements for reproduction and for any other use other than that for research or private study. A good source of information on Canadian copyright law can be found at the Canadian Intellectual Property Office website.
The University of Toronto Library asserts copyright over the contents of our digitized special collections. Please consult the individual websites for more specific information for each digital collection.
In cases where permission to publish is required, please contact us. Permission to publish need only be sought once you can identify precisely what it is you want to publish, and once you have a commitment from a publisher. Requests should include a complete citation identifying the precise source of the material you are seeking permission to publish (call number and page number; or collection number, box and folder number). Your request should also include the author and title of the book/article being published, the name of the publisher and date of publication and details about the distribution (i.e., print run of 1000, web publication).