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Book Publishers and Google Reach Settlement on Book Scanning Rights

October 4, 2012
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA/WASHINGTON, DC—Oct. 4, 2012—The Association of American Publishers (AAP) and Google announced a settlement agreement that will provide access to publishers’ in-copyright books and journals digitized by Google for its Google Library Project. The dismissal of the lawsuit will end seven years of litigation.

The agreement settles a copyright infringement lawsuit filed against Google on Oct. 19, 2005, by five AAP member publishers. As the settlement is between the parties to the litigation, the court is not required to approve its terms.

The settlement acknowledges the rights and interests of copyright-holders. U.S. publishers can choose to make their books and journals available for or excluded from digitization by Google for its Library Project. Those deciding not to remove their works will have the option to receive a digital copy for their use.

Apart from the settlement, U.S. publishers can continue to make individual agreements with Google for use of their other digitally-scanned works.

“We are pleased that this settlement addresses the issues that led to the litigation,” said Tom Allen, President and CEO, AAP. “It shows that digital services can provide innovative means to discover content while still respecting the rights of copyright-holders.”

“Google is a company that puts innovation front and center with all that it does,” said David Drummond, senior vice president, Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer, Google. “By putting this litigation with the publishers behind us, we can stay focused on our core mission and work to increase the number of books available to educate, excite and entertain our users via Google Play.”

Google Books allows users to browse up to 20 percent of books and then purchase digital versions through Google Play. Under the agreement, books scanned by Google in the Library Project can now be included by publishers.

Further terms of the agreement are confidential.

This settlement does not affect Google’s current litigation with the Authors Guild or otherwise address the underlying questions in that suit.

The publisher plaintiffs are The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.; Pearson Education, Inc. and Penguin Group (USA) Inc., both part of Pearson; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; and Simon & Schuster, Inc. part of CBS Corporation.

About AAP
The 300 members of the Association of American Publishers are building the future of publishing. AAP represents America’s premier creators of high-quality entertainment, education, scientific and professional published content. We dedicate the creative, intellectual, financial and technological investments to bring great ideas to life and deliver content to the world’s audiences in all the ways they seek it.

Source: AAP.
 

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