Google books search discussed at Property Rights Task Force meeting

Friday, February 5, 2010
Dan Clancy and Lauren Schoenthaler
Dan Clancy and Lauren Schoenthaler

On February 4, the Department of Justice issued a filing with the U.S. District Court on the proposed settlement agreement between Google, book authors and publishers, suggesting that there was more work to be done on the agreement regarding the Google Book Search project. At 7:00 p.m. on February 4, Lauren Schoenthaler, senior university counsel at Stanford, and Dan Clancy, chief engineer on the Google Book Search project, gave a presentation to Hoover’s John and Jean De Nault Task Force on Property Rights, Freedom, and Prosperity.

In their wide ranging presentation, Schoenthaler and Clancy described the genesis of the project, Stanford’s involvement from its earliest days, the terms of the proposed settlement, and the benefits that will accrue to scholars and readers of the works being digitized.

Members of the task force were quick to engage Schoenthaler and Clancy on the details of the size of the project, its rationale, and the settlement agreement. Task force members offered their thoughts on intellectual property and copyright issues in the digital age, the anti-trust implications, and the benefits of making out-of-print books more readily available. They also offered their opinions on the next steps in the settlement negotiations.

Google is making millions of books available online. In this video, NewsHour correspondent Spencer Michels looks at the plan and what it could mean for the future of reading.

The Task Force on Property Rights, Freedom, and Prosperity examines how secure property rights help foster economic development, encourage natural resource stewardship, advance investment in intellectual and physical capital, encourage sound business practices, and promote liberty and individual responsibility.