Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Coverage of the news that Judge Denny Chin has rejected the proposed settlement between Google and the Authors Guild and other plaintiffs. From the Chronicle of Higher Education; from the American Library Association; from the ABA Journal's Law News Now. In brief, Judge Chin found that under the settlement, Google would have the power to create a monopoly over "orphan works" and would be exempt from liability for infringement under copyright laws.
While the digitization of books and the creation of a universal digital library would benefit many, the ASA would simply go too far. It would permit this class action--which was brought against defendant Google Inc. ("Google") to challenge its scanning of books and display of "snippets" for on-line searching--to implement a forward-looking business arrangement that would grant Google significant rights to exploit entire books, without permission of the copyright owners. Indeed, the ASA would give Google a significant advantage over competitors, rewarding it for engaging in wholesale copying of copyrighted works without permission, while releasing claims well beyond those presented in the case.
Read Judge Chin's ruling here.