The Price of Liberty: $30?

What price liberty? You can have it for free, with strings attached, or you can have it for $30 per book. Google and Microsoft say they want to make all of the world's information available to all, and why should anyone care if they make a buck or three on every search?

The search giants have been taking slightly different tacks to making books searchable. Google, the worldwide leader in search, is bull-rushing the issue, saying it will digitize every book ever written, regardless of whether or not it gets permission. It argues that merely digitizing the content doesn't violate anyone's copyright, and promises it will only display snippets of copyrighted text for fair use such as quotes used by scholars.

Microsoft is trying to be seen as more respectful of authors and other copyright holders, and has said it will only digitize books that are not protected by copyright, or books whose copyright holders have given Microsoft permission to do so. Both companies said they will digitize the books at no cost to the libraries and publishers who hold them, but both companies also require exclusive search rights on the materials they so generously digitize.

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News source: eWeek

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5 Comments

Meh. I don't care who does what, I just want my school books online so I can use Ctrl + F to find what it is I'm looking for. F*** the stupid appendix (which may or may not have what I'm looking for as well).

Mango said,
I'd hate to be the bloke typing it all up :P
I don't believe it is being typed. Google is scanning every page then using OCR and mixing that with text searches.

Thats bs... they say they will digitize every book ever written, but only publish snippits of it? I think they should still have to pay royalties if we can't even put part of a copyrighted song in the background of our sky-diving video without it being removed for "violation of copyright".... Even snippets of tv shows on youtube have proven to be violations of copyright.... how can that NOT be?

Freedom costs a buck-o-five.

But it would be pretty useful to have a database of books, especially encyclopedias, online. Wikipedia isn't the only good source out there

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