Authors, publishers settle suit against Google

Politics & Legal Posted on

Eager to cool the debate over copyrighted text online and anxious to make some money, Google and the publishing industry announced Tuesday that they have settled their three-year legal battle over the Internet giant's book search program.

Under an agreement reached by Google, the Authors Guild and the Association of American Publishers, librarians and the public will have an easier time tracking down millions of out-of-print books. At the same time, Google and the book business will have greater opportunities for online sales.

"We're trying to create a new structure where there will be more access to out-of-print books, with benefits both to readers and researchers and to the rights holders of those books — authors and publishers," Richard Sarnoff, chairman of the publishers association, said Tuesday in an interview.

"This is an extraordinary accomplishment," Paul N. Courant, university librarian for the University of Michigan, said in a statement. "It will now be possible, even easy, for anyone to access these great collections from anywhere in the United States."

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