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Author Topic: About copyright, books and fair use.  (Read 3646 times)

Offline Fallen One

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About copyright, books and fair use.
« on: October 23, 2012, 02:44:24 AM »

 This is a column I just found:

 http://gigaom.com/2012/10/11/why-google-is-right-and-the-authors-guild-is-wrong-on-book-scanning/

  What do you think about this?
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Offline Autumn2May

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Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2012, 12:34:04 PM »
Not having a lot of background on this topic, is Google trying scan all the books to make it so you could search for a character name or a quote from a book and it would bring up a list of matching works? So like if I knew remembered the character's name was Kvothe but I forgot the name of the book I could look it up using the character name?

Offline Jeni

Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2012, 12:55:11 PM »
Not having a lot of background on this topic, is Google trying scan all the books to make it so you could search for a character name or a quote from a book and it would bring up a list of matching works? So like if I knew remembered the character's name was Kvothe but I forgot the name of the book I could look it up using the character name?

Sounds like that's exactly what Google want to achieve. The issue seems to be the fact that to do this they are scanning books in their entirety and there is a difference if opinion as to whether or not this breeches copyright. The initial ruling seems to be that Google's intended use for the scanned material falls firmly within the 'spirit' of original copyright laws. I guess the publishers/authors at the end of the day are concerned with the potential piracy issues although this article doesn't go as far as suggesting this, that is just my opinion. FWIW.

Offline Fallen One

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Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #3 on: October 23, 2012, 01:03:44 PM »

 Just another article I found I thought could be interesting:

  http://boingboing.net/2012/10/22/kindle-user-claims-amazon-dele.html
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Offline Autumn2May

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Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2012, 02:11:20 PM »
Not having a lot of background on this topic, is Google trying scan all the books to make it so you could search for a character name or a quote from a book and it would bring up a list of matching works? So like if I knew remembered the character's name was Kvothe but I forgot the name of the book I could look it up using the character name?

Sounds like that's exactly what Google want to achieve. The issue seems to be the fact that to do this they are scanning books in their entirety and there is a difference if opinion as to whether or not this breeches copyright. The initial ruling seems to be that Google's intended use for the scanned material falls firmly within the 'spirit' of original copyright laws. I guess the publishers/authors at the end of the day are concerned with the potential piracy issues although this article doesn't go as far as suggesting this, that is just my opinion. FWIW.

See now I wish my library had that. I have a bunch of books in my brain that I read long ago that I have no idea what they are called. Being able to search the actual content to find them would be awesome! That being said, I would think that how Google uses this info and who has access to it would be a big part of whether or not it's a good idea or not.

Offline Autumn2May

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Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2012, 02:15:11 PM »

 Just another article I found I thought could be interesting:

  http://boingboing.net/2012/10/22/kindle-user-claims-amazon-dele.html

I saw that one yesterday. What a mess! Regardless of what the problem was, I think the fact that they won't even talk to the customer about the problem is the worst bit here. How do they know they didn't make a mistake? How do they know that the "related account" wasn't set up by a hacker/spammer unbeknownst to the customer? That is just a poor business model in my mind. And then taking into account that a company can just take back books you've bought (or at least rented “forever”) without explaining it is ridiculous.

Offline Autumn2May

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Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2012, 02:39:19 PM »

Offline pornokitsch

Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2012, 02:47:45 PM »
Hmpf. I'm a little irked at the Amazon drama. It sucks, but Amazon sell 7m+ Kindles each quarter.

If this is the first instance of fail, that's the best customer service ever. And, actually, it wasn't their fail: she had registered with an address in a different country so she could buy books that aren't out yet in her home country. Not illegal, but that violates the way rights are sold for books - publishers hate it. (She bought books in the UK instead of Norway.)

Amazon have the same license agreement with users & their books that Apple does with users & their music. I think everyone was ready to jump on Amazon and this made an excellent opportunity to do so.

(Much more irritated about their dodgy tax practices in the UK. And, you know, the crushing of independent booksellers...)

Offline Fallen One

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Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #8 on: October 23, 2012, 02:56:32 PM »
And still, the only people affected are legitimate users, while the pirates get the better of everything. That sounds like quite an inefficient business model.
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Offline Nestat

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Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #9 on: October 23, 2012, 04:46:26 PM »
Hmpf. I'm a little irked at the Amazon drama. It sucks, but Amazon sell 7m+ Kindles each quarter.

As far as I can see, her mistake was not understanding the intricacies of international publishing contracts. After all, Amazon is quite happy to sell you physical books from another country. You and I understand these things Jared, because we have ties to the publishing industry. The average person does not, nor should they be expected to.

More importantly, Amazon refused point blank to explain to her what had happened and why it happened. They deprived her of a substantial amount of her property with no recourse to appeal, independent arbitration or effective legal action. Their "licensing" clause might be legal, but that doesn't make it moral - and it probably isn't legal when they don't make it clear to customers that they will effectively rent the books, not own them.     

Each one of those seven million sales is an opportunity for this to happen again.
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Offline Nestat

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Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #10 on: October 23, 2012, 04:50:10 PM »
And, actually, it wasn't their fail: she had registered with an address in a different country so she could buy books that aren't out yet in her home country. Not illegal, but that violates the way rights are sold for books - publishers hate it. (She bought books in the UK instead of Norway.)

Did you read Autumn's link? She bought the Kindle in the UK and was buying the books on an account registered to her Norwegian address. When she needed a replacement Kindle, Amazon refused to ship to Norway and insisted she provide a UK address. She did so, they shut her down. Massive fail - Amazon.

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Offline pornokitsch

Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #11 on: October 23, 2012, 05:23:20 PM »
Good lord, we're now arguing this on multiple screens! :)


Offline Nestat

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Re: About copyright, books and fair use.
« Reply #12 on: October 23, 2012, 05:26:52 PM »
That's the power of the internet, baby.
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