Revised Google Settlement Filed At Eleventh Hour

At one point on Friday it did not look like we were going to have a revised Google Settlement. Delays of several hours and attorney negotiations finally led to a revised settlement being lodged late Friday evening with Judge Denny Chin presiding over the case in the US District Court. The revised settlement, according to a statement from the plaintiffs, will now only include books registered with the US copyright office and only those countries which share a common legal heritage and similar book industry practices.’ The countries included will be USA, UK, Australia and Canada, with other European countries now excluded.
Significantly, new books on sale internationally will be considered commercially available and cannot be used by Google by default. This is very much an agreement considerably watered down from the original settlement, so much so, that the Publishers Association in the UK has lodged a letter of support for the revised Google Settlement with the US District Court with the understanding that proposed revisions now agreed will be implemented.
The next stage of legal proceeding will see a notice period of objections with a new Fairness Hearing pencilled in for early 2010.

Postscript:
Here is an outstanding and forthright article by Mark Barrett of Ditchwalk today, November 15th, examining Google’s global digitization march and his views on Sergey Brin’s (Google co-founder) recent article in the New York Times.

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