French Lawsuit Over Google Book Search

French publisher sues Google for piracy from AFP and French book publisher sues Google from the BBC cover how a French publishing group becomes the third to sue Google over its book scanning program. La Martiniere alleges the indexing project violates copyright. Association of American Publishers Sues Google over Library Digitization Plan and
Google's Library Scanning Project Heads to Court (action by the Authors Guild) covers the two other suits that I know of, which we've blogged about before.

Postscript: Google argues with U.K. publishers over digital libraries from covers publishers in the UK making new attacks against the program. The Publishers Association trots out the usual argument that scanning to index is the same as copying to reprint and that permission should be required.

The group's web site, it should be noted, has 919 pages listed in Google, all of which are protected by copyright, all of which Google and other search engines index without explicit permission -- and all of which the group apparently doesn't object to, since it doesn't seem to have banned indexing using a robots.txt file (the site is down, so I can't verify this first hand -- but the pages really are unlikely to be listed if this were the case). But do the same thing with a print book -- copy for indexing purposes rather than reprinting -- and suddenly, that's infringement. Well, the courts will sort it out.

Indexing Versus Caching & How Google Print Doesn't Reprint and Once Again -- The Difference Between Google Print & Google Library are two key articles from me that examine the issues above in much more depth.

About the author

Danny Sullivan was the founder and editor of Search Engine Watch from June 1997 until November 2006.

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