Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Wednesday, December 05, 2021

out of print
The Weekly Standard’s Jonathan V. Last takes a look at the continuing resistance in the book world over Google Book Search and the related Google’s Library Project.

Here’s what it boils down to:

Google’s defense of its book-scanning project, says Mr. Last, represents a misguided extension of the company’s guiding vision: that information only has value when people use it, after it has been delivered to them and appropriately organized by a service like Google’s. The creation of a gigantic digital library might sound incredibly useful and appealing, says Mr. Last, but it risks violating the principle embodied in intellectual-property law that created works have value.

In other words, permission’s not required if it enhances — i.e., disseminates to the wide reach of the Web — the product. Google feels it’s performing an inherently good service by enlivening dead-tree material.

This pretty much confirms my assessment of Google’s fundamentally wrong-headed approach when it comes to intellectual property rights:

It’s very much an entitlement-based attitude: Because Google’s mastered the technique, the company feels it can forge ahead without initial consensus-building. In the long run, it’s a fatal flaw in running a business.

Not that it’s hurt Mountain View’s stock price just yet. But hopefully, there’ll be a reckoning at some point.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 12/05/2021 11:46:04 PM
Category: Internet, Publishing
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