Opposition to Google’s plans to scan and punt millions of books on the interwebs has swelled in the past 24 hours, with the French government, Microsoft and privacy groups all voicing their concerns about the deal. France was the latest government to chide Google’s ambitious Book Registry proposal by saying it failed to …
Bad For Biz
It's a shame that no one (perhaps including Google) is doing what's right overall, but merely what's good for self-interest (and shareholders).
But whenever Microsoft chimes in about unfair practices/tactics, I have to laugh. Or I would, if it were funny, and not disgusting and hypocritical.
Yet again, USA != Rest Of World
While I agree that Google should not be handed what amounts to indemnity against (basically) nicking copyrighted booked and sticking them on the web, this "agreement" was made in the USA with some publishers association.
Regardless of the legality and/or morality of that agreement, this has no bearing on the rest of the world. Not all the world's authors and publishers are based in the USA, oddly enough. Therefore, Google are STILL infringing copyright outside of the US, which must amount to (what?) 80/90% (?) of the stuff they are trying to nick?
Books not in print
While publishers keep a vast number of book copyrights but don't make the books available for sale Google should push as hard as it can.
All of mp3
So just to be clear, Allofmp3 licensed music from an agency, the real copyright holders didn't like it because the agencies claim to be able to license it was bogus.
In a totally different and completely unrelated thing, an agency that didn't own the copyright of orphaned work, licensed rights to that work to Google.
A threat to cultural diversity? These are the reasons why our race cannot grow. Share information, share ideas, capitalize on your labor, and products. Screw anybody that wants to limit the spread of information - they're the downfall of the human race.
@Books not in print
When a book goes out of print, in the majority of cases, the rights revert to the author. In general, authors want to see their out-of-print books made available, provided the deal is a reasonable one. What most of them don't want is to see the emerging market for digital books distorted by a huge corporation which scans their books without asking them (illegal in the UK, and quite possibly in the US, too), invites them to 'claim' their own books on a ropy database riddled with inaccurate data, and whose planned digital editions apparently consist of shoddily reproduced copies of the print pages, and raw OCR output.
Just try ...
... and get your own copy of The Dead Sea Scrolls.
I recently contacted a State (Texas) Agency website about a problem, and having received a boilerplate (non) answer, went to the Federal Agency website. After collecting my zip (postal code) I was directed back to the State's boilerplate automagically. I've been serviced by Google, kisses available for a small additional fee. Give the Politbureau Web 2.0 and all will be well.
Anyway, the hearing on this is Oct. 7, but the real hearing is today: Right now direct Corporate Campaign Contributions are illegal, that's about to be undone. It's all very thick, but the bottom line is that the Writer's Guild and Google are about to become a persons in their own right and Google's argument that "anybody" can get into the book business by being sued silly by a class claiming to represent the opposition is valid - Copyrights are just a business contract, not a social contract. We'll have no more whining about morality from those Atomic Bomb inventors.
Even Microsoft is occasionally right
As much as I hate to admit it, Microsoft is right on this one. Google is attempting to grab intellectual property rights to every book ever written in one fell swoop. Makes major bank-robbers from days past look like pikers.
I don't have any problem with Google setting up its service, but it should be OPT-IN from the copyright holders (and Google should have to verify that the person opting in is the true copyriht holder). This business of "we're going to take EVERYTHING unless someone objects" is just plain wrong.
And for the Pot's Encore...
It's got alot more kettles to call names as well!