Tuesday, August 18, 2009

More Pushback Against the Google Book Search Settlement; Library Journal, 8/11/09

Norman Oder via Library Journal; More Pushback Against the Google Book Search Settlement:

"The Google Book Search Settlement, heading for a court hearing in October but also the subject of a Department of Justice antitrust inquiry, is beginning to generate more skepticism from arbiters of the public interest...

Questions of fairness

Samuelson questions whether the AAP and AG were fair representatives of the larger classes, and whether the Book Rights Registry can represent “the thousands of times larger and more diverse class of authors and publishers of books from all over the world.”

She noted, for example, that many academic authors “would much rather make their works available on an open access basis than to sign up with the Registry.”

Her subsequent column will explore why the Antitrust Division is investigating. In response, Law professor Mike Madison predicted, “The Justice Department will, in the end, facilitate a deal that gives other book scanning projects a release regarding orphan works that is comparable to what Google is getting via the settlement.”

Should authors opt out?

Meanwhile, the New York Times reports that agency William Morris Endeavor has advised authors it represents to opt out of the settlement because it would “bind copyright owners in any book published prior to January 9, 2009 to its terms.”

The Authors Guild responded that William Morris was off-base."


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