A U.S. judge has rejected Google's deal with publishers that would have digitized every book and made them widely available.
Following is the full text of the ruling of Judge Denny Chin denying Google's library plans.
Before the Court is plaintiffs' motion pursuant, to Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for final approval of the proposed settlement of this class action on the terms set forth in the Amended Settlement Agreement (the ASAH). The question presented is whether the ASA is fair, adequate, and reasonable. I conclude that it is not.
While the digitization of books and the creation of a universal digital library would benefit many, the ASA would simply go too far. It would permit this class action - which was brought against defendant Google Inc. to challenge its scanning of books and display of snippets for on-line searching -- to implement a forward-looking business arrangement that would grant Google significant rights to exploit entire books, without permission of the copyright owners.
Indeed, the ASA would give Google a significant advantage over competitors, rewarding it for engaging in wholesale copying of copyrighted works without permission, while releasing claims well beyond those presented in the case.
Accordingly, and for the reasons more fully discussed below, the motion for final approval of the ASA is denied. The accompanying motion for attorneys' fees and costs is denied, without prejudice.