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Glazer's Camera

Life Archives Made Available on Google

Woody Allen Woody Allen
Arthur Schatz - LIFE, © 2008 Time Inc.

Google and Time Inc. have teamed up to bring more than 10 million images from Life magazine to users around the world. The free image portal contains collections from Life's Photo Archive, including some of the most iconic works of the 20th century by photojournalists such as Margaret Bourke-White, Gordon Parks and W. Eugene Smith.

Already, millions of Life images are available for viewing via Google Image Search. Once the online project is complete in the next few months, the archive will be among the largest professional photography collections on the web and one of the largest photo-scanning projects ever undertaken.

Life's archive will be available at no charge for personal and research purposes, and will be searchable in 16 different languages. The images, however, will not be available for commercial use. The general public can view the collection at life.com and will also be able to purchase images from the archive through QOOP.com.

Larger images will contain a digital watermark, while the smaller photos will not. Images are also encoded to allow the company to track any misuse. Copyright and ownership of all images will remain with Time Inc., while Getty Images will maintain the right to license images in the Life Photo Archive.

The Life Photo Archive contains some of the world's most famous photo collections, such as the Zapruder film of the Kennedy assassination; the Mansell Collection from London; the Dahlstrom glass plates of New York and environs from the 1880s; Hugo Jaeger's shots of Nazi-era Germany; DMI's red-carpet celebrity portraits; Pix Inc. personalities; and the entire works left to the collection from Life photographers Alfred Eisenstaedt, Gjon Mili and Nina Leen.

Even with so many famous images, Time Inc. estimates that about 97 percent of the photographs in the archive have never been seen by the public. For more on the newly added photo collections, see images.google.com/hosted/life.