angry tapir and several other readers passed along the news that the US Department of Justice has come out against the revised agreement to settle copyright lawsuits brought against Google by authors and publishers. This is a major blow to Google's efforts to build a massive digital-books marketplace and library. From the DoJ filing (PDF): "...the [Amended Settlement Agreement] suffers from the same core problem as the original agreement: it is an attempt to use the class action mechanism to implement forward-looking business arrangements that go far beyond the dispute before the Court in this litigation. As a consequence, the ASA purports to grant legal rights that are difficult to square with the core principle of the Copyright Act that copyright owners generally control whether and how to exploit their works during the term of copyright. Those rights, in turn, confer significant and possibly anticompetitive advantages on a single entity — Google."
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