Amended Google Settlement Submitted

The parties to the Google Book settlement submitted a revised version of the settlement to the court late on November 13.

Revisions include a reduced scope of coverage (limited to works registered with the U.S. Copyright Office, or published in the U.K., Australia, or Canada), the establishment of a fiduciary working out of the Book Rights Registry to look out for the interests of orphan works rightsholders, an increase in the possible number of library access terminals, and the ability for rightsholders to make their books available for free or under licenses such as those from Creative Commons. The "most favored nation" clause that was a cause of concern for many has been eliminated, allowing the Books Rights Registry to "license to other parties without ever extending the same terms to Google." Publishers from the U.K., Australia, and Canada have been added as plaintiffs, and will have representation on the Books Rights Registry.

Under the revised settlement, the deadline to claim books has been extended to March 31, 2011.

In a court order filed on November 19, Judge Chin gave preliminary approval to the revised settlement. In his preliminary approval, he set important dates for moving forward: supplemental notices will be sent beginning December 14, objections to the amended portions of the settlement must be filed by January 28, and a final fairness hearing has been scheduled for February 18.

In a memorandum filed the day following the court order, November 20, Amazon requested that judge to reconsider the preliminary approval he had granted to the settlement, citing that the decision was made without the benefit of opposing viewpoints from members of the class.

View the amended settlement agreement and the supplemental notice (a shorter document which details the changes to the settlement) here: http://www.googlebooksettlement.com

View a redlined version of the settlement: http://thepublicindex.org/docs/amended_settlement/amended_settlement_redline.pdf