While Google is receiving blacklash over its print service, Microsoft has snuck in and signed a deal with the British Library to digitally reproduce over 25 million pages of content.

The deal will allow the world's biggest software firm to scan some of the library's collection and publish digital copies of journals, maps and manuscripts on the Internet.

Microsoft will work with the Open Content Alliance, a consortium of non-profit groups and Yahoo.

Microsoft and the British Library will work together to digitise around 100,000 out-of-copyright books and deliver search results for this content through the new MSN Book Search service help people find precisely what they're looking for on the web. MSN Search will launch an initial public beta offering next year.

Lynne Brindley, Chief Executive of the British Library, said, “This partnership helps us fulfil our vision of promoting ready access to our collection for everyone who wants to use it. This is great news for research and scholarship and will give unparalleled access to our vast collections to people all over the world: the items digitised will be available to anyone, anywhere and at any time".