July 21st, 2009
The proposed Google Book Search settlement creates the opportunity for unprecedented access by the public, scholars, libraries and others to a digital library containing millions of books assembled by major research libraries. But the settlement is controversial, in large part because this access is limited in major ways: instead of being truly open, this new digital library will be controlled by a single company, Google, and a newly created Book Rights Registry consisting of representatives of authors and publishers; it will include millions of so-called “orphan works” that cannot legally be included in any competing digitization and access effort, and it will be available to readers only in the United States.
Alexander Macgillivray, Deputy General Counsel for Products and Intellectual Property at Google (and soon to be General Counsel of Twitter) chats about the Google Book Search Settlement, its intricacies, pros, and cons, and responds to provocative questions and comments.
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