The Association of American Publishers (AAP) and Google have reached a settlement agreement over the long-running row over Google’s book digitisation programme, bringing an end to the litigation but leaving other parties out in the cold to pursue their own settlements separately.
It is the second such settlement, and resolves a copyright infringement lawsuit filed against Google in October 2005 by five AAP member publishers. Unlike the original Google Book Settlement this deal does not need a court to ratify it. And unlike the first settlement agreement there is no indication that Google has agreed to pay out compensation. “Further terms of the agreement are confidential”, the two parties said.
According to a press statement, the settlement “acknowledges the rights and interests of copyright-holders”. US publishers can choose to make available or choose to remove their books and journals digitised 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.
Under the agreement, books scanned by Google in the Library Project can now be included by publishers within Google Books, which allows users to browse up to 20% of books and then purchase digital versions through Google Play. Apart from the settlement, US publishers can continue to make individual agreements with Google for use of their other digitally-scanned works.
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