Open Book Alliance Files Brief Strongly Opposing Revised Google Settlement

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Last Thursday, the Open Book Alliance (OBA), a consortium that includes Amazon.com, Yahoo, CLMP, and other parties that oppose the Google settlement, filed a 25-page brief with the Southern District Court of New York strongly opposing the revised Google settlement.

In a press release that explains–and links to the full text of–the brief, the OBA states that “The OBA believes that the proposed settlement threatens to bottleneck the access to and distribution and pricing of the largest, private digital database of books in the world.”

Here’s more from the OBA:

The torrent of criticism to the settlement may have produced amendments to the class definition, but it has not affected Google’s conduct one iota… All in all, little has been accomplished, save from Google’s perspective as it continues to build its lead over competitors. …The Court’s procedures are ill-suited for resolution of what is now at stake in this matter — rewriting the copyright law, restructuring the publishing industry, and maintaining a competitive search market.”

The proposed Google book settlement is not a philanthropic effort to bring literature into the 21st century and bridge a literary divide. In reality, Google is focused on becoming the sole owner of an immense digital library that will improve the company’s advertising-based search business. This de facto exclusive license will provide Google with an enormous advantage over its search competitors.

And so the saga of the Google settlement goes on, without an end clearly in sight.