Page last updated at 10:10 GMT, Tuesday, 29 December 2009

Google is sued by Chinese author Mian Mian

Google website
France, Germany and the US have also objected to the Google book plan

A Beijing judge has told the Chinese novelist Mian Mian, who is suing Google over its plan to create an online library, to hold settlement talks.

After a two-hour hearing, the court ordered both sides to talk but did not set a deadline for reporting back, according to the author's lawyer.

She is seeking damages of 61,000 yuan ($8,950; £5,576) and a public apology.

The lawsuit was filed in October after Google scanned one of Mian Mian's books, Acid House, into its library.

Google said it had removed the book as soon as it learned of the lawsuit, but had no further comment on the case.

Mian Mian writes risque novels - including titles such as Panda Sex and Candy - about China's underworld of sex, drugs and nightlife. Most of her work is banned in China.

She is not alone in complaining about copyright issues raised by Google's online library. The China Written Works Copyright Society is also looking for compensation for other Chinese authors whose work is included in the project.

In France, a court ordered Google to stop digitising French books without the publisher's approval. The search engine was also told to pay 300,000 euros ($430,000; £268,000) in damages and interest to French company La Martiniere, which had sued for copyright infringement for scanning book excerpts.

In the US, Google agreed a $125m settlement with American authors and publishers - although this is still waiting for final court approval.



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