A week ago, Google reached a “landmark settlement” with authors and publishers. I saw the headline somewhere, bookmarked it, told myself I must read it later. And life carried on.
Today I started catching up on “back burner” stuff, which nowadays includes unread bookmarked material. And went to this press release.
I began to read. Authors, publishers, and Google reach landmark settlement. [Good news.] Copyright accord would make millions more books available online. [Even better.] Then I got into the small print, which I reproduce here:
If approved by the court, the agreement would provide:
- More access to out-of-print books […. ]enabling readers in the US to search these works and preview them online
- Additional ways to purchase copyrighted books [….] further expanding the electronic market for copyrighted books in the US [….]
- Institutional subscriptions to millions of books online [….] offering a means for US colleges, universities and other organisations [….]
- Free access from US libraries [….] at designated computers in US public and university libraries [….]
You see where it’s broken? Not Google’s fault. But it needs fixing.