FAQs for the Remote Eresources service

Electronic resources

Find answers to and guidance on our most frequently asked questions.

Published date:

Why can't I access all of your electronic resources?

The Library has licence agreements with publishers governing access to all its electronic resources. In the majority of cases these licences only permit access on Library premises. Licences for these resources permit the Library's Reader Pass holders access whilst at home.

I've registered online for a Reader Pass. Can I access these resources?

Not yet. You need to go to the Reader Registration Office, with your identification and proof of address, and collecting your photographic pass. You are not fully registered until you have done this.

I've got a photographic Reader Pass, but it's expired. Can I still access these resources?

No. You need to renew your pass in order to get access.

For the Readex databases, what are substantial or insubstantial portions of data?

There are no fixed numerical limits as what constitutes substantial. It will be determined by Readex on a case-by-case basis taking into account a number of factors. These will include:

  • the resource used
  • the level of the user
  • the number of documents that a user may require for a particular search/research project
  • patterns of downloading. For example the systematic downloading of data could be viewed as inappropriate.

In no event shall such quantity of data from the resource reasonably substitute for a comprehensive copy of the resource or any of the documents in the resource database that could prejudice or diminish Readex's advantage in licensing the resource database for commercial gain.

Who's responsible for the content of these eresources?

The Remote Eresources service gives access to information provided by other organisations. The British Library has no control over this content and availability. The British Library does not assume liability for content made available by third parties.

When will I be able to access other electronic resources?

The Library can only enable remote access to a resource if the publisher licence permits it. The majority of licences do not. The Library will make resources available remotely if it is permitted to do so. We are working with publishers to explore ways to increase the number of electronic resources that can be accessed remotely. 

I can access resources remotely via my public library. Why can't you offer me the same access?

Licences governing the use of electronic resources by public libraries are different to those governing the use by the British Library. We can only provide you access if the licence we have permits us to do so.

Why does Safari appear not to recognise the Remote Eresrouces website's security certificate?

The certificate we are using for our website is valid for Safari. If you choose to continue to the website you can access the remote resources.