News & Trends: Countdown to the Google Book Search Settlement Review
The preliminary settlement agreement between the Association of American Publishers, the Authors Guild and Google regarding Google’s Book Search project and its alleged copyright violation has been heralded by the parties involved as a victory. Other publishers and industry analysts also have voiced optimism over the settlement’s impact on the industry. But as the date of the final settlement review (the Fairness Hearing) approaches (June 11), many still are investigating the agreement’s details. Others have voiced concern and suggest the settlement demands some significant changes. And time is of the essence. Because this is a class-action suit filed on behalf of authors and publishers, virtually anyone who owns copyright interest in a book is included in this settlement, unless they opt out by the May 5 deadline. That is also the deadline for anyone to submit objections to or comments on the settlement. Those who do not opt out of the settlement will be “bound by the court’s rulings” and will relinquish their rights to sue Google regarding this matter in the future.