CEPIC Reacts to revised book settlement

CEPIC, which,  in an apparent rebranding this week is calling itself the ‘centre of the picture industry’ has reacted to the revised Google books settlement that was submitted on friday. While the photo associations are not part of the settlement they oppose the changed proposal. The Initiative for a Competive Marketplace (ICOMP) has also issued a statement claiming that the revised proposal does not fix the serious problems of the original settlement.

“In general, the main issue of the Google Book Settlement remains : it is a private commercial agreement handled behind closed doors, which not only amicably settles past disagreements but establishes a working framework for the future serving the special interests of one company. More importantly for us, the amended version does not address the main concern of our industry : disregard of copyright and authors rights.

  •  The Settlement still allows Google to use and sell works on an opt-out basis
  •  The Settlement excludes foreign works but does not go the whole way and keeps works published in the UK, Canada or Australia
  • -The Settlement gives the newly created “Unclaimed Work Fiduciary” (UWF) extensive powers to set terms on behalf of authors of orphaned works – although by definition these authors are not in a position to have transferred their rights.

Last but not least, the issue of illegaly scanned photographs remains. If the Settlement is agreed, infringement on millions of photographs will retrospectively be legalised and the only solution for copyright holders will be to undertake long and costly legal procedures under worsened circumstances. via CEPIC.

The reaction from Icomp: ICOMP Voices
i-comp.org | November 17, 2009
Quote: Although ICOMP is still studying all 173 pages of the revised proposal, it clearly does not fix the serious problems that plagued the original settlement and that led to widespread European condemnation. Although some European works will technically now fall outside the scope of the settlement, Google appears intent to continue copying and engaging in “snippet” display of copyrighted European works through its existing arrangements with American libraries. In short, the behaviour that sparked years of anger and frustration amongst European publishers and authors goes on. To say the least, the revised settlement is a massive disappointment. No one seriously doubts the value of expanding online access to books and making books more easily searchable online. But Google’s newest settlement proposal, like the earlier version, is a disaster. It would give Google a monopoly over millions of the world’s books

Marco | Editor

Editor at large and founder of a bunch of stockphoto businesses