Google can appeal against Authors Guild

A new chapter is unfolding in the long-running lawsuit between the Authors Guild and Google.

Google is now allowed to appeal a book scanning class action ruling against Authors Guild, the US Circuit Court of Appeals announced yesterday in an order, according to paidContent.

Only last week, Authors Guild claimed the online giant would pay US$750 per unauthorized scanned book if the company loses the case, making a total of as much as $2 billion in copyright damages, reported the Christian Science Monitor.

In 2004, Google partnered with several universities to scan their libraries, in order to make the digital copies available online. However, Google was scanning books withouth the rights holders’ permission, which resulted in Authors Guild suing the company for copyright infringement the following year.

After extensive negotiations, both parties reached a settlement last year: Google would continue scanning books and displaying up to 20 percent of the text online, as well as allowing to sell entire books online. On the other hand, the rights holders would get 67 percent of the revenues, reported Wired

However, Google would scan without first asking for permissions, which meant that any published book from any author, letting Google go too far upon the limits of copyright law. Plus, this also included the so-called orphaned works, (whose authors are unknown or can not be located) into Google’s digitization project.

US District Judge Denny Chin rejected this settlement as it would have granted Google a “de facto monopoly” and the right to profit from books without the permission of copyright owners. He acknowledged that “the creation of a universal digital library would benefit many,” but said that the proposed agreement was “not fair, adequate and reasonable,” reported NY Times.
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This entry was posted in .book, Authors Guild, copyright, Google, lawsuit, scan. Bookmark the permalink.

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