In response to the moaning and groaning of book publishers, the world’s favorite search engine announced it won’t be scanning copyrighted books for a while. Last October, Google announced that it had launched its “Google Print" program.
The program entails scanning books, and making their content searchable. For publishers, Google says, it’s a great way to promote their books, even if they are out of print. And for libraries, it’s a great way to allow more people to access their materials.
Not everybody shares the rainbow colored enthusiasm Google always seems to have. It seems that some publishers are upset that Google is scanning their copyrighted content, and putting it online for the world to learn from.
So now the company is taking action.
According to Google’s official blog, it will not scan any copyrighted books until November, giving publishers ample time to tell the search engine that it does not want their books to be scanned.
“Any and all copyright holders – both Google Print partners and non-partners – can tell us which books they’d prefer that we not scan if we find them in a library,‿ wrote Google Print Product Manager Adam M. Smith in the Google blog.
I tend to side with Google on this one. They’re only using small amounts of copyrighted books in their index, and it’s for educational and organizational purposes only. (Google isn’t re-publishing books).