Google wins six-year battle with French publishers
Paris: Google and a group of French book publishers have reportedly resolved a long-running legal battle over the search giant’s book scanning and indexing efforts.
The French Publishers Association and the French Author’s Association withdrew their lawsuits under an agreement that allows publishers to sell digital copies of out-of-print books that Google will scan.
According to Politico, Google will also help finance a database of works by authors and copyright holders, the company and the associations said.
“In this win-win solution, publishers and authors retain control over the commercial use of their books, while at the same time, opening a practical path to bring to a wide audience our decadelong efforts to digitize books,” Google’s Philippe Colombet, strategic partner development manager of Google Books France, wrote in a blog post.
According to the report, Colombet also hoped that Google’s settlement of lawsuits signals a possible direction for similar deals to settle litigation in the US so that the search giant can digitize rare and out-of-print books.
“We remain hopeful to reach a solution in the US allowing us to make the world’s books searchable and discoverable online,” he added in the blog post.
French authors and publishers sued the company in 2006 for copyright violations.
In the US, authors and publishers also sued, but the company reached an agreement with the Authors Guild and the Association of American Publishers in 2008.
However, a US district court in New York last year rejected the agreement, and parties are still meeting to try to negotiate a resolution.
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