Archive for October 11th, 2012

Fair use: a pseudo-post

Thursday, October 11th, 2012

I feel as though I should say something about the promising trends in fair use, especially after the decision in Deluded Author Organization Versus Hathi Trust–oh, wait, that’s not the actual name of the trial. Make that Authors Guild vs. HathiTrust. Which follows the decision in the Georgia State case (not quite as clear-cut) and the non-decision in the AAP vs. Google Books suit. All in all, “promising trends” seems like the right summary.

But I’m not a great current-affairs writer. When I attempted to do a current summary of an interesting situation as it was happening, a while back, the response made it clear that people don’t look to me or to Cites & Insights for of-the-moment coverage. Or at least didn’t. And, as neither a lawyer nor a copyright expert nor a librarian, I don’t really have standing to provide lots of personal pronunciamentos on what’s happening here.

So I’ll just say: It’s looking good. I’m tagging items. I already did fair use pieces in the June and July issues of C&I, and I’ll probably do one in a couple of (or a few) months. Maybe after Authors Guild gives up on the Google Books suit (assuming the organization of a few authors has the good sense to stop shoveling good money after bad, an assumption I’m not quite willing to make)?

Meanwhile, here’s a totally inadequate partial set of links on the HathiTrust situation, including only items since the decision was handed down (although I have a bunch more tagged, going back to April 2011 and maybe earlier)–which comes down to yesterday and today:

Those are in the order I encountered them (hat-tips to various folk). I suppose the recommended reading order is probably James Grimmelmann first for an authoritative summary, then Smith, Sims, Loon, Crews, and the rest–and the order itself if you’re so inclined. Read all that, and you’ll be more up to date than I am (I’ve tagged them, but not necessarily read them all).

PS (added later on Thursday): I don’t currently plan to keep updating this list as the comments and articles flow in…