Google Print and Copyright

bq.Google Inc.’s plan to digitize the collections of some of the world’s biggest libraries is facing stiff criticism from a group of academic publishers who complain that the project may violate copyright laws and hurt book sales. – “Verne Kopytoff(Google’s library project challenged Publishers cite loss of revenue, possible copyright violations)”: According to my understanding, only works out of copyright would be fully available through Google. The others would merely be preserved in digital form. Apparently, even that is unacceptable.
bq.Google’s response to publishers’ objections to Google Print for Libraries that they may “opt out” of the program seems both legally irrelevant and factually disingenuous. Among other reasons, it is irrelevant because all a publisher can do under this option is assert its control over the right of display by Google after the infringing copies have been made. It ignores the fundamental exclusive right of distribution, since a copy or copies will have already been given to the participating libraries. – “Peter Givler(Letter to Google)”: So, even though the University owns the copy of the book, it has no right to scan a copy of it, according to Mr. Givler. An interesting argument because not even the MPAA or RIAA have gone that far that I can think of. But then, these works are still a tremendous source of income for the publishers.
bq.Of the 187,280 books published in the U.S. from 1927-1946, only 4,267 are currently available from publishers at any price. In other words, of the entire universe of books published in the United States that are potentially affected by the retroactive 1976 extension, only 2.3 percent remain commercially available, while 183,013, or roughly ninety-seven percent of those works, remain commercially dormant and inaccessible. – “Jason Schultz(Revised: Myth of the 1976 Copyright Catastrophe)”: This all reminded me of something. Back when I was in high school, I had a friend whose mother’s hobby was collecting out of print science fiction novels. When she couldn’t locate a copy, she would borrow one and then retype the entire thing. It usually took her two or three days. From my understanding of copyright law, what she did was far worse than what Google is proposing. Although, the fact that what either she or Google have done is considered wrong shows that there are some seriously flaws in Copyright Law.

Posted by Michael K Pate

Michael K. Pate tends to spend a great deal time of time around computers. He has been a Librarian since 1997. Michael was born in Avon Park, Florida in 1966. Except for a couple of brief periods in his life (once in Tampa and once in Winter Haven/Haines City), he has been a life-long resident. Originally, he planned on a career as a Computer Programmer and therefore graduate from Webber College with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems in 1988. However, unhappy with career opportunities at the time, he soon returned to school and received a BS in Social Science Education from the University of South Florida. He began his career in education at Avon Elementary and later Avon Park Middle working as a Computer Lab Coordinator. While technological challenges were interesting, he found himself more and more interested in becoming a Media Specialist. He began work on his MLS in 1995. However, a summer internship at the Sebring Public Library in 1996 soon made him reconsider just what his career should be. Upon graduation in 1997, he secured a position as a Media Specialist at Eastside Elementary in Haines City. Eventually, the position he was looking for opened up and he returned to SPL as Reference Librarian in 1999. In 2003, he became Assistant Director of the Highlands County Library System, serving in that role until the position was eliminated during a late round of budget cuts in 2010. Since then, he has been the Computer Support Specialist for the Heartland Library Cooperative. In 2011, he began serving on the Board of Directors of the Tampa Bay Library Consortium.