Judge Nixes Settlement with Google Books, Says It 'Exploits' Books

A federal judge on Tuesday quashed a settlement between Google Inc. and authors and publishers that would have allowed the Internet company to put millions of books online. In a 48-page decision, Manhattan Judge Denny Chin said the 2008 settlement between Google, authors, and publishers would “exploit” books without the permission of the copyright owners. The U.S. Justice Department opposed the deal last year on similar grounds. Chin suggested a fix for the deal: letting copyright owners opt in to the settlement rather than out, as it currently reads. A lawyer for Google called the decision “disappointing” and said the company believes that struck-down settlement “has the potential to open up millions of books that are currently hard to find in the U.S. today.”