Authors Guild Loses Fair Use Argument, Petitions Supreme Court for Copyright Fee Payment from Google

January 12, 2016

The article on Fortune titled Authors Guild Asks Supreme Court to Hear Google Books Copyright Case continues the 10 year battle over Google’s massive book scanning project. Only recently in October of 2015 the Google project received  a ruling in their favor due to the “transformative” nature of the scanning from a unanimous appeals court. Now the Authors Guild, with increasing desperation to claim ownership over their work, takes the fight to the Supreme Court for consideration. The article explains,

“The Authors Guild may be hoping the high profile nature of the case, which at one time transfixed the tech and publishing communities, will tempt the Supreme Court to weigh in on the scope of fair use… “This case represents an unprecedented judicial expansion of the fair-use doctrine that threatens copyright protection in the digital age. The decision below authorizing mass copying, distribution, and display of unaltered content conflicts with this Court’s decisions and the Copyright Act itself.”

In the petition to the Supreme Court, the Authors Guild is now requesting payment of copyright fees rather than a stoppage of the scanning of 20 million books. Perhaps they should have asked for that first, since Google has all but already won this one.


Chelsea Kerwin, January 12, 2016

Sponsored by, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph



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