Intellectual Property

The Fight over the Google of All Libraries

An (Updated) Wired.com FAQ on the Google Books Project and the fight over a settlement. Federal judge Denny Chin will have the difficult job of sorting that out Thursday, as he gives the second version of the Google settlement a “fairness hearing.”

The New World of Copyright?

A novel by a 17-year-old in Berlin has risen high on the best-seller list and become a finalist for a major book prize, but the author has also received scathing criticism because she lifted some passages from someone else’s book. She even admits having copied an entire page with only a few changes. Although she has apologized for not being more open about her sources, she has also defended herself as the representative of a different generation, one that freely mixes and matches from the whirring flood of information across new and old media, to create something new. "There's no such thing as originality anyway, just authenticity," she said.
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/12/world/europe/12germany.html?partner=rss&emc=rss

Google, copyright, and our future.

Google, copyright, and our future: Lawrence Lessig

The deal constructs a world in which control can be exercised at the level of a page, and maybe even a quote. It is a world in which every bit, every published word, could be licensed. It is the opposite of the old slogan about nuclear power: every bit gets metered, because metering is so cheap. We begin to sell access to knowledge the way we sell access to a movie theater, or a candy store, or a baseball stadium. We create not digital libraries, but digital bookstores: a Barnes & Noble without the Starbucks.

Why Even the Most Pirated E-Books of 2010 Won't Bring Down Publishing

Why Even the Most Pirated E-Books of 2010 Won't Bring Down Publishing
O’Leary’s conversations with execs at digital rights firms suggest that content with smaller markets (selling fewer than 12,000 to 15,000 total units) priced at $100+ are most likely to feel the economic impact of piracy. He adds, “Books that have much wider audiences or that sell for much lower prices may be pirated more often, but the overall impact of piracy (revenue lost as a share of total sales) is not as great for these books.”

Putting the "Public" In Publicly-Funded Research

Putting the "Public" In Publicly-Funded Research

Now, the public has an opportunity to show support for this innovative, common sense idea. Since December, the OSTP has been hosting an involved discussion on their blog, asking for input on every angle of public access, including which federal agencies should adopt public access policies, which file formats could help solve compliance and archival issues, and what the ongoing role of the government should be.

Fahrenheit 451 Book burning as done by lawyers

Fahrenheit 451… Book burning as done by lawyers

For Bradbury’s book, this means that the reading public, the braille printer, the budding playwright, the school library face either higher prices, or legal restrictions on reuse or both. And they get no benefit from it. Clearly, the incentive of 28 + 28 years was enough to encourage him to write the book and the publisher to publish it. The evidence is that.. it happened. Retrospectively extending copyright is deadweight social loss — harm without benefit. But at least the book is available.

LISTen: An LISNews.org Podcast -- Episode #101

(Yes, the air staff knows the episode is earlier than usual. We have our reasons...)

This week's episode is the first one for 2010. In this episode we discuss why LISTen will not be at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas yet again and also get into a miscellany of briefs from allied fields. Unusually enough a musical number performed by a member of the board of directors of the Guitar Society of Las Vegas, Erie Looking Productions western engineer Mike Kellat, is also included in this episode.

Related links:
Discussion of the TWiT Network presence at CES 2010
ALA Mid-Winter 2010
Matt Asay talking about Canonical & focus
Alan Pope on an Ubuntu sighting on Doctor Who
Virginia Postrel on media company exploitation of workers
Radio New Zealand National on French anti-piracy efforts relative to the Internet
The Register discussing the French agency known as HADOPI
The Digital Economy Bill before the United Kingdom Parliament presently
Section 44 of the Digital Economy Bill relative to UK public lending right and how library loans of books will be codified as not being copyright infringments
The Register on UK ISP rage over the Digital Economy Bill
Breitbart.tv relaying Agence France-Press about electricity rationing in Venezuela
Information about the Guitar Society of Las Vegas

14:36 minutes (5.85 MB)
mp3
[audio-player]

Google Loses in French Copyright Case

Google was ordered to stop putting scanned French books in its database and to pay about $430,000 in damages.

Story in the NYT

An opportunity missed to apply 'fair use' to file sharing

Opinion piece in the LA Times about the Tenenbaum case.

DIY Book Scanners Turn Your Books Into Bytes

For nearly two years, Daniel Reetz dreamed of a book scanner that could crunch textbooks and spit out digital files he could then read on his PC.

Book scanners, like the ones Google is using in its Google Books project, run into thousands of dollars, putting them out of the reach of a graduate student like Reetz. But in January, when textbook prices for the semester were listed, Reetz decided he would make a book scanner that would cost a fraction of commercially available products.

So over three days, and for about $300, he lashed together two lights, two Canon Powershot A590 cameras, a few pieces of acrylic and some chunks of wood to create a book scanner that’s fast enough to scan a 400-page book in about 20 minutes. To use it, he simply loads in a book and presses a button, then turns the page and presses the button again. Each press of the button captures two pages, and when he’s done, software on Reetz’s computer converts the book into a PDF file. The Reetz DIY book scanner isn’t automated–you still need to stand by it to turn the pages. But it’s fast and inexpensive.

“The hardware is ridiculously simple as long as you are not demanding archival quality,” he says. “A dumpster full of building materials, really cheap cameras and outrageous textbook prices was all I needed to do it.”

Full article at Wired.com Gadget Lab

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