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Google Book Settlement News

Two important pieces of news have developed about the Google Book Settlement.   First, the court has granted an extension on filing papers for opting out of the settlement. Prominent authors like Patricia Briggs and Kresley Cole and Meljean Brook have opted out but I also know that major agents have advised their authors to NOT opt out (there is no opt in. If you do nothing, you will be part of the settlement).

Second, the Department of Justice has opened an inquiry into the antitrust ramifications of the settlement.   Maybe by the time that a court does rule on the GBS, the Supreme Court will have determined whether a settlement can include orphaned works.   

Articles re this:  

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

One Comment

  1. Meljean
    Apr 30, 2009 @ 13:38:10

    Although I like the idea of the books being searchable for many reasons, I’m bothered by the grab of rights that this settlement allows.

    One option that I ran across is here: Ask the Editor

    It suggests opting out of the settlement, then signing up for the Google Books Partner program. It allows you to keep your rights, and is — as far as I can tell — separate from the settlement.

    Jane, one interesting (and maybe frightening) aspect of the settlement that I ran across was via Writer Beware, from a Columbia law school symposium:

    There is nothing in the settlement to disallow Google from taking titles “opted in” and making them available on an eReader, thus swallowing a chunk of the burgeoning ebook market.

    On the other hand, maybe they’ll give Amazon some competition :-/

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