Paul N. Courant interviewed by American Libraries about Google Books U.S. Court of Appeals ruling

March 29, 2011

Paul N. Courant was quoted in an American Libraries article about a recent U.S. Court of Appeals decision regarding the Google Books settlement.

The case's ruling judge, Denny Chin, rejected Google's proposal for how to handle the digitization of unclaimed works. While Chin recognized the importance of digitizing libraries for future generations, in his decision he wrote that the agreement "would simply go too far." Google proposed that orphaned works still protected by copyright would be categorized under the public domain unless an author comes forward and asks to be removed from the collection.

Courant told American Libraries that he hopes the ruling will "finally spur Congress to make real progress toward orphan works legislation." "Notwithstanding the decision," Courant continued, "Google continues to scan our books [as part of the five library mass digitization project begun in 2004] and we continue to use the scanned works for preservation, indexing and search, linguistic research, and to meet the needs of those with print disabilities."