Peter Brantley, director of the Internet Archive, which is putting the coalition together, tells the Wall Street Journal that coalition members want the agreement revised, but aren’t necessarily pushing to have it blocked.
The settlement stems from a lawsuit that claimed Google’s practice of scanning books and making them available online violated the copyrights of authors and publishers. Google settled the lawsuit last October, and a federal judge has already given tentative approval of the settlement. But, in response to growing opposition from authors’ groups and others in the publishing industry, final approval of the settlement was delayed until a Fairness Hearing scheduled for October 7th.
The new coalition stepping up now to challenge the agreement includes Microsoft, Yahoo, Amazon, and “a number of other library associations,” according to the Wall Street Journal. The New York Times received confirmation from Microsoft and Yahoo of their involvement, but not from Amazon. The Times also says the group is tentatively being called the Open Book Alliance. It’ll be formally announced within a couple weeks.
This isn’t Microsoft’s first involvement in fighting the Google book settlement: We reported in April that Microsoft was helping to fund opposition from New York Law School. The US Justice Department has also confirmed its own investigation into the settlement.