16:09 15 November 2013
Eight years ago, the Authors Guild filed a lawsuit against Google claiming that the search engine juggernaut copied millions of books for an online library without permission. On Thursday, a federal judge ruled that Google Books is protected by the “fair use” principle of copyright law.
U.S. Circuit Judge Denny Chin in New York agreed that Google’s move of scanning more than 20 million books and making “snippets” of text available online, doesn’t violate the US copyright law.
The Authors Guild was disappointed with the decision. It’s executive director, Paul Aiken said: "Google made unauthorized digital editions of nearly all of the world's valuable copyright-protected literature and profits from displaying those works. Such mass digitization and exploitation far exceeds the bounds of the fair use defense."
Meanwhile, Google welcomed the decision. In a statement, it said: "This has been a long road and we are absolutely delighted with today's judgment. As we have long said, Google Books is in compliance with copyright law and acts like a card catalog for the digital age."
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