Google reaches deal with French publishers on book scans (Update)

Jun 11, 2012 by Myriam Chaplain-Riou
The screen of a computer shows a Google Book search on the home page of Internet giant Google's website. Google has reached a deal with French publishers and authors on scanning books and putting them online, ending a six-year legal battle over copyrights.

Google has reached a deal with French publishers and authors on scanning books and putting them online, ending a six-year legal battle over copyrights, publishers' group SNE said Monday.

"The two parties reached an agreement enabling us to encourage initiatives to publish digital books and creative diversity while respecting the rights of the author," the SNE, which represents some 600 publishing houses, said in a statement.

"This announcement marks a positive advance for updating France's print heritage under copyright and contributes to expanding the availability of digital books."

The deal puts an end to Google's appeal of a 2009 court decision that ruled the US Internet giant had "committed acts of copyright violation" by digitising French books and putting them online.

The Paris court had ordered Google to pay 300,000 euros ($375,000) in damages to three French publishers owned by La Martiniere group and a symbolic sum of one euro to the SNE and the SGDL Society of Authors.

SNE president Antoine Gallimard said the SGDL, which represents some 6,000 authors, had been key to negotiating the deal.

"The authors will be able to say yes or no to the indexing of their works," Gallimard said.

"It is now up to each publishing house to decide if it wants to sign a framework accord with Google on authorship rights or not," he added.

Under the deal, Google and the publishers will develop a catalogue of books that are eligible to be digitised.

Publishers will be able to decide whether a given title can appear on Google's search engine or be sold in digital form, and will retain the right to withdraw a work or prevent it from being scanned.

Google will give money to develop an SGDL list of authors and copyright holders.

It will also give money for an SNE programme called "Little Champions of Reading" that will promote reading aloud among primary school students.

Google Books France director Philippe Colombet called the deal "a key phase" in Google's relationship with the French publishing world, saying it would give authors and publishers control over how their works are sold.

"All conditions are now in place for Google to participate in developing digital books in France and contribute to spreading French culture," he said.

Google has scanned more than 20 million books in over 400 languages since 2005.

Explore further: WellPoint 2Q tops Wall Street expectations

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

French publisher settles with Google

Aug 25, 2011

A French publisher who had battled in court to stop Google from publishing books online without permission said on Thursday it had come to terms and entered a partnership with the US-based Internet giant.

Google strikes deal to scan French books

Nov 17, 2010

Internet giant Google struck an agreement with France's biggest publisher Hachette Livre to scan thousands of out-of-print French books for Google's online library, the companies said on Wednesday.

Google given more time to reach book settlement

Jun 01, 2011

A US judge on Wednesday allowed Google and US authors and publishers more time to seek a new settlement over the Internet giant's plan to create a massive online library and bookstore.

Google fined $14,300 a day in France over books

Dec 18, 2009

(AP) -- A Paris court ruled Friday that Google Inc.'s expansion into digital books breaks France's copyright laws, and a judge slapped the Internet search leader with a euro10,000-a-day fine until it stops ...

Recommended for you

Why let your sales force influence product prices?

12 hours ago

From the outside, you might not notice the ongoing tension within many large businesses: the battle between salespeople, on the one hand, and marketers and product managers, on the other. Because the salespeople ...

User comments : 0