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NPPA Joins Fifteen Others in Copyright Suit Against Google Books

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The National Press Photographers Association has decided to throw their hat in the ring with 15 other organizations that are all suing Google over what they see as “widespread, well-publicized, and uncompensated infringement of exclusive rights” perpetrated by the search giant’s Google Books program.

The suit consists of a 49-page complaint, which states the Google Book Search consistently turns up images in both books and periodicals that are, in fact, copyright protected. The complaint levies some pretty serious accusations against Google, whose Books application has already been at the center of criticism and litigation by writers who also claim copyright infringement.

In addition to citing specific examples of copy protected content that has been scanned and displayed via Google Book Search, the complaint states that:

Google’s acts have caused, and unless restrained, will continue to cause irreparable injuries to Lead Plaintiffs and the Class members through: continued copyright infringement and/or the effectuation of new and further infringements of the Visual Works contained in Books and Periodicals; diminution of the value and ability to license and sell their Visual Works; lost profits and/or opportunities; and damage to their goodwill and reputation.

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Those lead plaintiffs include The American Society of Media Photographers, The Graphic Artists Guild, The Picture Archive Council of America, The North American Nature Photography Association, and many more, all of whom believe that it is their job to advocate for the artists whose copyrighted work is being devalued by Google.

NPPA president Mike Borland explained that it was “only natural” for the association to join its peers in this suit, saying that it’s important “not [to] allow companies like Google to infringe upon our rights uncontested.”

(via The NPPA)