July 23, 2014

Authors Guild, Australian Society of Authors, Quebec Writers Union Sue Five U.S. Universities

share save 171 16 Authors Guild, Australian Society of Authors, Quebec Writers Union Sue Five U.S. Universities

From an Authors Guild News Release:

The Authors Guild, the Australian Society of Authors, the Union Des Écrivaines et des Écrivains Québécois (UNEQ), and eight individual authors have filed a copyright infringement lawsuit in federal court against HathiTrust, the University of Michigan, the University of California, the University of Wisconsin, Indiana University, and Cornell University. Plaintiff authors include children’s book author and illustrator Pat Cummings, novelists Angelo Loukakis, Roxana Robinson, Danièle Simpson, and Fay Weldon, poet André Roy, Columbia University professor and Shakespeare scholar James Shapiro, and Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winning biographer T.J. Stiles.

The universities obtained from Google unauthorized scans of an estimated 7 million copyright-protected books, the rights to which are held by authors in dozens of countries. The universities have pooled the unauthorized files in a repository organized by the University of Michigan called HathiTrust. In June, Michigan announced plans to permit unlimited downloads by its students and faculty members of copyright-protected works it deems “orphans” according to rules the school has established. Other universities joined in Michigan’s project in August.

The first set of so-called orphans, 27 works by French, Russian, and American authors, are scheduled to be released to an estimated 250,000 students and faculty members on October 13th. An additional 140 books, including works in Spanish, Yiddish, French, and Russian, are to be released starting in November.

Read the Complete News Release

Direct to the Full Text of the Complaint Filed With the Court (PDF)

Hat Tip/Thanks: Peter Brantley/@napinya

Coverage:

1. “Authors’ Guild sues universities over book digitization project” (via ars technica)

2. “Authors Guild Sues University Libraries” (via Publishers’ Weekly)

3. Accused Of Copyright Infringement For Reprinting Images Produced In 630 (via Techdirt)

share save 171 16 Authors Guild, Australian Society of Authors, Quebec Writers Union Sue Five U.S. Universities
Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.