Google is engaged in one of the largest print legal-notice campaigns in history, spending about $7 million of an $8 million campaign on notices in print newspapers and magazines around the world.
The campaign is a move required under a class-action settlement which will have Google paying $125 million to create a system under which customers will be charged for reading a copyrighted book, according to The New York Times. The suit against Google was filed in federal court by a large group of authors and publishers who argued that Google's plan to scan all the books in the world violated their copyrights.
More than 200 ads have run in more than 70 languages to date, in such varied publications as The New York Review of Books, The Poetry Review, Parade, USA Today, and China Copyright, as well as in newspapers in countries including Fiji, Greenland, the Falkland Islands and the Micronesian island Niue.
In addition to the vast print campaign, the effort to find copyright holders includes a direct mail effort and a dedicated website in 36 languages.
The website reads, in part: "The purpose of this website is to inform you of a proposed Settlement of a class action lawsuit brought by authors and publishers, claiming that Google has violated their copyrights and those of other Rightsholders of Books and Inserts. by scanning their Books, creating an electronic database and displaying short excerpts without the permission of the copyright holders. Google denies the claims. The lawsuit is entitled The Authors Guild, Inc., et al. v. Google Inc., Case No. 05 CV 8136 (S.D.N.Y.) The Court has preliminarily approved the Settlement. For further information, please review the Notice."
An estimated $50 million to $75 million a year is spent on class-action notifications, with the bulk going to print advertising.
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