[cc-community] CC on the Google Books Settlement?

Gavin Baker gavin at gavinbaker.com
Mon Nov 16 14:12:09 EST 2009

The revised settlement, released last Friday, "clarifies that
rightsholders can choose to make their books available for free or allow
re-use under Creative Commons or other licenses":


According to the FAQ, "The Court will set a timeline, which will likely
include a notice period, an objection period, and a Final Fairness hearing
in early 2010."


So, although CC did not comment on the first draft settlement, there may
be a possibility to comment on the revised draft. I certainly think it
would be appropriate for CC to do so, at a minimum on the terms of the
settlement that pertain to CC licenses.

On Tue, September 8, 2009 11:41 pm, Mike Linksvayer wrote:
> On Tue, Sep 8, 2009 at 8:06 PM, Gavin Baker<gavin at gavinbaker.com> wrote:
>> The FSF has objected to the Google Books Settlement on the grounds that
>> it must "[adopt] terms that better address the needs of authors using
>> free licenses like the GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL), and [which
>> do] not provide special competitive advantages to Google."
>> http://www.fsf.org/news/2009-09-google-book-settlement-objection
>> Presumably, similar concerns apply to authors using CC licenses. Has CC
>> weighed in on the Google Books Settlement?
> No.
> Personally I haven't fully formed an opinion of the FSF objection nor
> of the whole settlement for that matter.
>> (The deadline to file amici briefs, objections or to opt out of the
>> settlement was today. FSF could object as a member of the class covered
>> by the suit; I don't know if CC is in a similar position, but it could
>> have filed an amicus brief.)
>> I did notice that Google Books' Partner Program offers options for CC
>> license users:
>> http://creativecommons.org/weblog/entry/16823
>> but those options are only available to members of Google Books' Partner
>> Program. I can't tell whether membership in that program is open to any
>> author included in the class.
> The partner program (with CC options) exists regardless of the
> settlement outcome.
> The Google Books blog and the settlement FAQ both claim that the "book
> rights registry" that would be created by the settlement would have
> some support for CC licensed books. See
> http://booksearch.blogspot.com/2009/08/bringing-power-of-creative-commons-to.html
> and
> http://www.googlebooksettlement.com/help/bin/answer.py?answer=118704&hl=en#q43f
> Granted, this is entirely different from what I think at a glance that
> the FSF objection is saying -- that a private settlement shouldn't
> cover works that have a public license available (at least a free one,
> presumably excluding NC and ND, but I'm extrapolating from their
> mention of only FDL and BY-SA) -- the parties should have to use under
> terms of the public license. However, I may not fully understand yet,
> nevermind have a fully formed opinion (I'd prefer the former to
> precede the latter :)).
> Mike
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Gavin Baker
gavin at gavinbaker.com

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