Opportunities & Challenges of 3D Printers

If your library owns or plans to own a 3D printer, take a look at ALA's 3D Tip Sheet that explores the public policy opportunities and challenges of 3D printer access for your patrons.

The tip sheet...

  • outlines the legal implications of providing the technology, and
  • details ways that libraries can implement simple yet protective 3D printing policies in their own libraries

"As the percentage of the nation's libraries helping their patrons create new objects and structures with 3D printers continues to increase, the legal implications for offering the high-tech service in the copyright, patent, design and trade realms continues to grow as well," said Alan S. Inouye, director of the ALA Office for Information Technology Policy. "We have reached a point in the evolution of 3D printing services where libraries need to consider developing user policies that support the library mission to make information available to the public. If the library community promotes practices that are smart and encourage creativity, it has a real chance to guide the direction of the public policy that takes shape around 3D printing in the coming years."

Source: "ALA launches educational 3D printing policy campaign" post on PUBLIB