By now, surely you’ve heard about the Google Books story. I’ll save you the sorted details of the past, and instead focus on the new problem: pictures.
You see, when Google Books scans a book, sometimes those books have pictures. The American Society of Media Photographers seems to have a problem with not getting paid royalties from the use of those pictures in scanned publications.
The story comes to us from Search Engine Land, where attorney for the ASMP James McGuire is quoted as saying:
“Google is scanning in books and publications with visual images, which impedes the rights of the copyright holders of those images. We are seeking compensation for that…. We are not trying to crash the party or influence what is happening with the other class action. We are just trying to get the best possible result for this class of plaintiffs.”
These photographers are excluded from the original lawsuit, as detailed on the ASMP website, so now their recourse is to bring suit against Google themselves.
Google’s argument remains the same. The company is validating its actions by saying that it intends to be a categorical resource of every book ever published. Though there appear to be a few more bumps in the road than Google had planned on, you can be sure that Google Books will not disappear silently.