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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 October 2005, 23:10 GMT 00:10 UK
Google is sued by book publishers
Woman arranges a book shop display
Google reckons its plans will raise awareness and sales of books
Internet search engine Google is being sued by a group of book publishers over plans to put millions of titles online.

The Association of American Publishers, which includes firms such as Penguin, has filed a suit in New York claiming Google will infringe their copyrights.

As part of its Print Library Project, Google plans to index and scan millions of books from five major libraries.

Google countered that the lawsuit was "short sighted", claiming its idea will lift exposure and demand for books.

'So much time'

The legal action came after months of talks failed to hammer out an agreement.


"We spent so much time on this I think half of our board ended up having trouble with their families because of cancelling vacations," said Patricia Schroeder, president and CEO of the Association of American Publishers.

The group is not the only one to take exception to Google's literary aspirations.

Last month, a US writers' group sued Google also claiming its plans to digitise the books infringed author copyright.

Google said it has been taking into account the concerns of publishers and authors.

No damages

Once the texts are digitised, users would not be able to download or print the whole book, but would be able to view a few sentences from each.

Copyright holders have until 1 November to contact Google and get their titles removed from the list of those books to be scanned.

However, the publishers say that does not go far enough and want the whole process to stop and have called on the court to grant them an injunction claiming they are suffering "continuing, irreparable and imminent harm".

The legal action has been brought by five companies in all, and along with Penguin Group USA, there are McGraw-Hill, Pearson Education, Simon & Schuster and John Wiley & Sons.

They are seeking legal costs, but no damages.


SEE ALSO:
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