Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Google settlement with authors

The Google settlement with authors which must be approved by a federal judge before it takes effect, includes money for now and the prospect of money for later. There'll be at least $45 million for authors and publishers whose in-copyright books and other copyrighted texts have been scanned without permission. If your book was scanned and you own all the rights, you'll get a small share of this, at least $60, depending on how many rightsholders file claims. Far more interesting for most of us and the ambitious part of our proposal is the prospect for future revenues. Rightsholders will receive a share of revenues from institutional subscriptions to the collection of books made available through Google Book Search under the settlement, as well as from sales of online consumer access to the books. They will also be paid for printouts at public libraries, as well as for other uses.

The settlement of the lawsuits, which were filed in 2005, did not resolve the question of whether Google’s unauthorized scanning of copyrighted books was permissible under copyright law.

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