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The parties in the Google Book Search Settlement have asked the court to adjourn the scheduled October 7th fairness hearing, telling the court the parties intend to amend the deal. "Because the parties, after consultation with the DOJ, have determined that the Settlement Agreement that was approved preliminarily in November 2008 will be amended, plaintiffs respectfully submit that the Fairness Hearing should not be held, as scheduled, on October 7," reads a memorandum appended to the parties motion to adjourn.
"To continue on the current schedule would put the Court in a position of reviewing and having participants at the hearing speak to the
original Settlement Agreement, which will not be the subject of a motion for final approval." The court is expected to grant the motion. Publishers Weekly reports.
A Beardstown (IL) school district official will receive statewide recognition next month for defending a book some parents sought to have removed from the library shelves.
Sue Reichert, director of libraries for Beardstown School District, will be given the Illinois Library Association’s Intellectual Freedom Award in October.
The award — which “recognizes an individual or group for outstanding contributions to the defense and advancement of intellectual freedom” — will be presented during a ceremony Oct. 8 in Peoria.
Reichert was cited for professionalism in handling the protest over the Jodi Picoult book “Nineteen Minutes,” according to Illinois Library Association officials.
“In spite of vociferous opposition to the book, she held fast to the [school district] policy by gathering background information on the book and arranging a faculty review for the purpose of making a recommendation to the school board,” according to the association.
The book was challenged in 2008 when a parent sought its removal because of the explicit language and sexual content he saw in it when his seventh grade daughter brought it home. Journal-Courier reports.
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In testimony before the House Judiciary subcommittee this morning, Marybeth Peters, U.S. Register of Copyrights, in her first detailed comments on the subject, blasted the Google Book Search Settlement as “fundamentally at odds with the law.” In a blistering assessment of the deal, Peters told lawmakers that the settlement is in essence a compulsory license that would give Google the ability to engage in activities, such as text display and sale of downloads, that are “indisputable acts of copyright infringement.”
The Utah State University OpenCourseWare project has shut down because it ran out of money, making it perhaps the biggest venture to close in the burgeoning movement to freely publish course materials online. The project’s director was laid off on June 30th and while the Web site remains up for now, it no longer has any dedicated staff and is no longer adding new courses.
In a break with tradition, The Associated Press plans to prevent members and customers from publishing some AP content on their websites. Instead, those news organizations would link to the content on a central AP website — a move that could upend the consortium’s traditional notions of syndication.
That’s one revelation from a document we obtained (labeled “AP CONFIDENTIAL — NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION”) that offers new insight into how the AP is planning to reinvent itself on the Internet according to Neiman Lab, Harvard University.
The seven-page briefing, entitled “Protect, Point, Pay — An Associated Press Plan for Reclaiming News Content Online,” was distributed to AP members late last month. It provides greater detail about the tracking device that will be attached to AP content and describes their plans to create topic pages around news stories to rival Wikipedia and major aggregation sites. And in an hour-long interview last night, the AP’s general counsel, Srinandan Kasi, also shed light on how the consortium views reuse of its material across the Internet.
Article in BoingBoing:
James Grimmelman sez,
The Associated Press -- which thinks you owe it a license fee if you quote more than four words from one of its articles -- doesn't even care if the words actually came from its article. They'll charge you anyway, even if you're quoting from the public domain.
I picked a random AP article and went to their "reuse options" site. Then, when they asked what I wanted to quote, I punched in Thomas Jefferson's famous argument against copyright. Their license fee: $12 for an educational 26-word quote. FROM THE PUBLIC FREAKING DOMAIN, and obviously, obviously not from the AP article. But the AP is too busy trying to squeeze the last few cents out of a dying business model to care about little things like free speech or the law.
Thanks to Bill Drew & Michael Sauers for the tip.
Full Paper [PDF]: The conventional rationale for copyright of written works, that copyright is needed to foster their creation, is seemingly of limited applicability to the academic domain. For in a world without copyright of academic writing, academics would still benefit from publishing in the major way that they do now, namely, from gaining scholarly esteem. Yet publishers would presumably have to impose fees on authors, because publishers
would not be able to profit from reader charges. If these publication fees would be borne by academics, their incentives to publish would be reduced. But if the publication fees would usually be paid by universities or grantors, the motive of academics to publish would be unlikely to decrease (and could actually increase) – suggesting that ending academic copyright would be socially desirable in view of the broad benefits of a copyright-free world. If so, the demise of academic copyright should be achieved by a change in law, for the ‘open access’ movement that effectively seeks this objective without modification of the law faces fundamental difficulties.
"Indeed, some of the most prominent online-based music retailers like Amazon and Apple sell without the stuff (the former never has, far as we know; Apple is more recent), but to hear the RIAA say it, especially after all the negative attention they've given themselves, well, it's quite something."