Monday, August 31, 2009
PUBLISHER FERGUS BARROWMAN REPONDS TO THE EDITORIAL IN TODAY'S OTAGO DAILY TIMES
Leaving aside the questions around whether the Google Book Settlement, if it goes ahead, will override NZ copyright law, or give Google an undue advantage over its competitors, the immediate question facing NZ writers and publishers is what to do. Opt out by sending a letter or email by the 4 September deadline, or do nothing and stay in?
The course Victoria University Press will be taking, and recommends to VUP authors, is to stay in. It is important to realise that the settlement does not give Google carte blanche to publish your book online. In fact, it allows you to dictate how much of the text Google can display (nothing or a 20% preview, your choice), or indeed to instruct them to remove your book entirely, and it makes you eligible to benefit from future revenue streams.
In order to realize these powers and benefits, you need to claim your books by the later deadline of January 5, 2010.