Google Books Settlement Gets Rejected By U.S. District Court

Mar 22, 2011
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Google Books Settlement Gets Rejected By U.S. District Court

Earlier today a U.S. District Court in New York rejected Google’s book settlement with the Authors Guild and Association of American Publishers. The Amended Settlement Agreement (ASA) allowed Google to scan whatever books it wanted and index them online.

Judge Denny Chin felt that “the ASA would give Google a significant advantage over competitors, rewarding it for engaging in wholesale copying of copyrighted works without permission, while releasing claims well beyond those presented in the case.” The ASA was proposed in 2005 and a settlement was first reached in 2008. However, there were plenty of objections to the settlement.

“Certain objectors oppose the ASA on antitrust grounds, arguing that (1) certain pricing mechanisms would constitute horizontal agreements that would violate the Sherman Act; (2) the ASA would effectively grant Google a monopoly over digital books, and, in particular, orphan books; and (3) such a monopoly would further entrench Google’s dominant position in the online search business,” wrote Judge Chin.

Naturally, some of the objectors to the ASA were Google’s competitors like Microsoft and Amazon. There were a host of other problems and objections like privacy issues and violations, objections from certain authors about adequate representation, and difficulties with foreign laws.

[via Business Insider]


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