Economy

Google Loses French Copyright Case

Google HQ. i

French court says "non" to Google's copying of French books without the publishers' permission. Ted S. Warren/AP Photo hide caption

itoggle caption Ted S. Warren/AP Photo
Google HQ.

French court says "non" to Google's copying of French books without the publishers' permission.

Ted S. Warren/AP Photo

Google's ambitious goal to make all the world's information searchable hit a French stumbling block Friday with a court in Paris ordering the Internet giant to cease from making electronic copies of books available unless the publisher has approved.

The court also ordered Google to pay 10,000 euros or about $14,318 a day each day the company allows unauthorized books to remain available on line.

Am excerpt from an IDG News Service story on pcworld.com:

French publisher La Martini??re Groupe filed suit against Google in June 2006, and was later joined in its case by the French Publishers Association (FPA), representing 400 publishing companies. The FPA will be disappointed by the size of the financial penalty: It had asked the court for 500,000 euros per day.

The search giant is studying the details of the ruling and plans to appeal, said Philippe Colombet, Strategic Partner Development Manager for Google Books, in a conference call with journalists.

"We regret the court's decision, as it means that French Internet users will have access to less content than Internet users in other countries," he said.

He declined to say whether Google intended to pay the daily fine rather than remove La Martini??re's books from its database.

Google has scanned 10 million books, more than half of them in languages other than English.

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