One of early Google’s most ambitious projects was to scan the world’s books and make them available online. The project ran into a number of copyright issues, but still exists as Search’s book lookup functionality. Today, the service is getting redesigned with the Google Material Theme.
Google Books Stories October 17
Google Books Stories October 16, 2015
Google wins appeal in book-scanning copyright lawsuit
Google has won an appeal in what is now a decade-long legal dispute over whether the company violated copyright law when it scanned millions of books into its online database.
The original lawsuit was brought against Google by the Authors Guild in 2005 and claimed that Google had violated copyright law by allowing readers to view up to 20 pages of copyrighted books without purchasing them.
Google Books Stories December 2, 2013
Google Books Stories November 14, 2013
After a nearly eight year battle stemming from a lawsuit brought on by authors accusing Google of digitally scanning books without permission, a judge has now officially sided with Google and dismissed the case. Reuters reports:
U.S. Circuit Judge Denny Chin in Manhattan accepted Google’s argument that its scanning of more than 20 million books for an electronic database, and making “snippets” of text available for online searches, constituted fair use.
“In my view, Google Books provide significant public benefits,” Chin wrote.
The ultimate decision was essentially that by scanning snippets of books to use with Google Books or in search, Google was providing more benefits to the authors than disadvantages. The judge is also quoted as calling the service “an essential research tool” that creates new income for authors and lets users discover content. GigaOM got the following statement from Google, but the Authors Guild is yet to speak out on the decision: expand full story
Google Books Stories October 4, 2012
Google and the Association of American Publishers just announced a settlement agreement for a 7-year-old litigation that will further provide access to copyrighted content digitized by Google for its Library Project.
Google started to scan and digitize library books in 2002 for its Book Search service founded in 2004 that allows users to download public domain books and snippets of copyrighted books. The Association of American Publishers filed a lawsuit against Google in 2005 for copyright infringement over the unauthorized snippets.
The Association sought an injunctive relief, but Google maintained the scanned book snippets were fair use. Both parties reportedly began negotiations to settle in 2006. However, in 2011, a supervising judge ruled to reject a major settlement proposal between them. Any news about close talks has since been quiet until today’s announcement about a finalized agreement.
The finalized agreement effectively ends the 2005 copyright infringement lawsuit; and the settlement is between the parties, so the court does not have to approve terms. The publisher plaintiffs include McGraw-Hill, Pearson Education, Penguin Group, John Wiley & Sons, and Simon & Schuster. Although the companies’ statement does not reveal whether Google infringed, they said the settlement “acknowledged the rights and interests of copyright-holders.”
Google Books Stories September 9, 2011
Google has just notified Google Books users via email that they can now purchase books through Google’s eBookstore website. This workaround comes after Apple shut off Google’s in-app book store on the Google Books app — available on the iTunes App Store. As seen in the image sent with the email, Google suggests you add this website to your iOS device’s homepage. Email from Google:
PLEASE NOTE: IF YOU DO NOT USE THE GOOGLE BOOKS APP FOR YOUR IPAD, IPHONE, OR IPOD TOUCH, YOU CAN DISREGARD THIS MESSAGE.
Dear Google eBooks customer,
We are writing to let you know about important changes to your Google Books app for your iPad, iPhone or iPod touch. Due to Apple’s new policies, you can no longer shop for Google eBooks within the app.
But don’t worry, you can install the Google eBookstore on your iOS device using the easy steps in this email, and continue to buy the books you want quickly and easily. For further assistance and more detailed, step-by-step, visual instructions, please visit our Help Center article or you can contact us.
Video tour after the break: