Sunday, October 02, 2005

COPYRIGHT: Considering Google's plan to scan and extract books

We will be considering later in the the semester the issue of copyright. Do you think Google should be obligated to obtain permission from book authors and publishers before scanning a book for indexing purposes?

Society of Professional Journalists: "Copyright lawsuit challenges Google's vision of digital library

Full story at the Christian Science Monitor:

Book publisher Lisa Grant recently got an e-mail from Google Inc. -- the $90 billion Internet search engine. 'Hello, Lisa, we understand that you have some concerns about your books being potentially included in the Library Project,' it said, referring to Google's well-known bid to digitize the book collections of major libraries, including those at the University of Michigan, Harvard, Stanford, and Oxford. The idea: Scan all or portions of those collections to make the texts searchable on the Internet for users around the world. 'As you already aware,' said the notice, explaining a step-by-step procedure, 'you can easily exclude books from the Google Library Project.' The interchange goes to the heart of a lawsuit filed in federal court in New York last week against Google and its Google Print Project. Brought by the 8,000-member Authors Guild, the suit seeks damages and an injunction to halt Google's project, claiming it violates copyright because authors have not first given permission to use their works. Google, for its part, says the project benefits authors and publishers by raising awareness of their books -- and including links to places to buy them. Users can see only small portions of copyrighted books -- much like the distilled information about a book contained on a library file card, the company says. Such minimal use complies with so-called 'fair use' laws, it says.

Source: Daniel B. Wood, The Christian Science Monitor"

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