September 14th, 2009 | Published in Google Public Policy
I thought I'd share a few more interesting YouTube clips from last week's hearing on "Competition and Commerce in Digital Books."
Chairman John Conyers explained that thanks to the Google Books program, "a library will be available in every household with an Internet connection -- this could be the greatest innovation in book publishing since the Gutenberg press."
Rep. Zoe Lofgren explained the history of orphan works legislation and argued, "as with all antitrust and copyright issues, there are competitors who sometimes try and seek a business advantage out of a dispute; it's important for us... to separate out that kind of squabbling from the actual legal issues that are before us."
Rep. Brad Sherman argued, "I think the only thing that's irresponsible is to tell the people of the world they're not going to have access to all the knowledge in all the books for which authors cannot be found. [...] This knowledge needs to be made available and I hope that we do that as quickly as possible."
Rep. Mel Watt argued, "the court can resolve this and in the meantime hopefully [Congress] will do something on orphan works."