Google Books Looses Legal Suit in France
According to a recent NY Time article, Google lost a legal suit in France for the battle to include foreign material in its Google Books Project. Basically, the courts determined that Google was exploiting French publishers and authors, and ordered ruled that Google pay,
“$430,000, in damages and interest… to stop digital reproduction of the material… and pay 10,000 euros a day in fines until it removed extracts of some French books from its online database.”
The French President, Mr. Zarkozy, is pushing for France to digitize its own “cultural heritage” instead of letting the foreign-owned Google corporation to control France’s digital content. According to the NY Times article, Google has digitized over 10 million books, of which over half of the collection are in foreign languages (not English).
France is one of the main parties opposed to the Google Book Project, so the final rulings are not surprising. The question will be how many other countries will follow Frances lead?
Google offers a simple outline of the settlement agreement at http://books.google.com/googlebooks/agreement/, with other useful links.