The Association of American Publishers today announced a lawsuit against Google for copyright infringement over the joint project to digitize books from major research libraries, including the University of Michigan. The AAP has been in talks with Google over publisher’s concerns over scanning material that is still under copyright, even though Google planned to make only a small portion of those works available to the public — talks broke down on Tuesday, and the suit was filed today. The publishers contend that scanning entire works is a violation of copyright law; Google is claiming fair use. Read more about it at the Street.com and at Reuters; ZDNet’s story has an early response by Google, and Business Week has an excellent article laying out the stakes. Many librarians hope this will go to the Supreme court to clarify very murky issues of copyright and fair use in the digital age.
Copyright versus fair use? You can get an overview at WCC’s own copyright website.