Google books deal battle heats up 谷歌数字图书馆建设步伐加快
文章来源:未知 文章作者:meng 发布时间:2009-09-07 02:47 字体: [ ]  进入论坛

The battle over Google's effort to digitise the world's books and create a vast online library has intensified1.


Authors have until Friday to opt2 out of the $125m settlement the search giant made with authors and publishers.

The date for comments to the New York court overseeing the class action suit was extended from Friday to Tuesday, after the filing system went down.

As time ticks away, supporters and critics have been manning both sides of the debate to win the public case.

'Civil right'

The settlement reached last October stemmed from a 2005 legal suit that Google faced for scanning out-of-print works without explicit3(明确的,详述的) permission from rights holders4.

If approved by a judge, Google would create a Book Rights Registry where authors and publishers could register works and be compensated(偿还,补偿).

Ahead of Friday's opt-out for authors, Google lined up a number of professors, students and civil rights activists5 who support the deal.

"We see access to knowledge as a civil right," Wade6 Henderson, president and chief executive of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, told reporters in a conference call.

"Information enables individuals to learn, to create and to pursue their dreams. Access to knowledge defines the meaning of equal opportunity in a democratic society," said Mr Henderson.

Access was also the issue that led the United States Student Association to throw its weight behind the Google books programme.

"Today, millions of books are accessible only to the privileged(有特权的) few who are accepted to universities and can actually afford to attend," said association president Gregory Cendana.

"With Google books, any student anywhere in the US will have the books in the greatest libraries of the world at their fingertips."


The most vocal7 critics of the deal have largely banded together to form the Open Book Alliance. It was set up by the non-profit Internet Archive, which has its own book-scanning project and has to date digitised 500,000 books.

"Just as Gutenberg's invention of the printing press more than 700 years ago ushered8 in a new era(开创了一个新纪元) of knowledge sharing, the mass digitisation of books promises to revolutionise how we read and discover books," said Peter Brantley of the alliance.

"But a digital library controlled by a single company and small group of publishers would inevitably9 lead to higher prices and subpar(欠佳) services for consumers, libraries, scholars and students."

Technology giants Yahoo, Microsoft and Amazon are part of the coalition10(结合,合并) along with a number of libraries and writers and journalists groups.

Amazon, which competes with Google by scanning books to sell through its electronic Kindle11 reader, filed its own statement against the deal this week.

"It is unfair to authors, publishers and others whose works would be the subject of a compulsory12 licence for the life of the copyright in favour of Google and the newly created Book Rights Registry," it stated.

'Fact, not fiction'

The settlement is being examined by the Department of Justice which is also deciding whether to oppose the agreement.

Meanwhile the Federal Trades Commission has told Google to develop a privacy policy to limit use of users' data.

Google has responded by drawing up a new privacy policy covering its digital library, which to date includes 10 million books.

"We'll work to ensure that the privacy of online readers is fact, not fiction," said FTC chairman Jon Leibowitz.

Many believe the issue of rights over out-of-print books would best be solved by legislation and not the courts.

"It is never a good thing for private parties to make deals for the public good," said Martin Manley, the founder13 of, an online store which sells used, rare and out-of-print books.

"The public good is meant to be solved by regulators who are somewhat accountable and by legislators who are wholly accountable," Mr Manley told BBC News.

A final court hearing on the settlement is planned for 7 October.


1 intensified 4b3b31dab91d010ec3f02bff8b189d1a     
v.(使)增强, (使)加剧( intensify的过去式和过去分词 )
  • Violence intensified during the night. 在夜间暴力活动加剧了。
  • The drought has intensified. 旱情加剧了。 来自《简明英汉词典》
2 opt a4Szv     
  • They opt for more holiday instead of more pay.他们选择了延长假期而不是增加工资。
  • Will individual schools be given the right to opt out of the local school authority?各个学校可能有权选择退出地方教育局吗?
3 explicit IhFzc     
  • She was quite explicit about why she left.她对自己离去的原因直言不讳。
  • He avoids the explicit answer to us.他避免给我们明确的回答。
4 holders 79c0e3bbb1170e3018817c5f45ebf33f     
支持物( holder的名词复数 ); 持有者; (支票等)持有人; 支托(或握持)…之物
  • Slaves were mercilessly ground down by slave holders. 奴隶受奴隶主的残酷压迫。
  • It is recognition of compassion's part that leads the up-holders of capital punishment to accuse the abolitionists of sentimentality in being more sorry for the murderer than for his victim. 正是对怜悯的作用有了认识,才使得死刑的提倡者指控主张废除死刑的人感情用事,同情谋杀犯胜过同情受害者。
5 activists 90fd83cc3f53a40df93866d9c91bcca4     
n.(政治活动的)积极分子,活动家( activist的名词复数 )
  • His research work was attacked by animal rights activists . 他的研究受到了动物权益维护者的抨击。
  • Party activists with lower middle class pedigrees are numerous. 党的激进分子中有很多出身于中产阶级下层。 来自《简明英汉词典》
6 wade nMgzu     
  • We had to wade through the river to the opposite bank.我们只好涉水过河到对岸。
  • We cannot but wade across the river.我们只好趟水过去。
7 vocal vhOwA     
  • The tongue is a vocal organ.舌头是一个发音器官。
  • Public opinion at last became vocal.终于舆论哗然。
8 ushered d337b3442ea0cc4312a5950ae8911282     
v.引,领,陪同( usher的过去式和过去分词 )
  • The secretary ushered me into his office. 秘书把我领进他的办公室。
  • A round of parties ushered in the New Year. 一系列的晚会迎来了新年。 来自《简明英汉词典》
9 inevitably x7axc     
  • In the way you go on,you are inevitably coming apart.照你们这样下去,毫无疑问是会散伙的。
  • Technological changes will inevitably lead to unemployment.技术变革必然会导致失业。
10 coalition pWlyi     
  • The several parties formed a coalition.这几个政党组成了政治联盟。
  • Coalition forces take great care to avoid civilian casualties.联盟军队竭尽全力避免造成平民伤亡。
11 kindle n2Gxu     
  • This wood is too wet to kindle.这木柴太湿点不着。
  • A small spark was enough to kindle Lily's imagination.一星光花足以点燃莉丽的全部想象力。
12 compulsory 5pVzu     
  • Is English a compulsory subject?英语是必修课吗?
  • Compulsory schooling ends at sixteen.义务教育至16岁为止。
13 Founder wigxF     
  • He was extolled as the founder of their Florentine school.他被称颂为佛罗伦萨画派的鼻祖。
  • According to the old tradition,Romulus was the founder of Rome.按照古老的传说,罗穆卢斯是古罗马的建国者。
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