U.S. News | Publishers Sues Internet Archive for Mass Copyright Infringement

Image Credit: © Nigerian Law Intellectual Property Watch

Publishers in the United States, John Wiley & Sons, Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins, and Penguin Random House have filed a lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against a non-profit American digital library, the Internet Archive (IA) for copyright infringement.

The plaintiffs reportedly said that the defendant announced creating the National Emergency Library initiative of providing digitized copies of books to help cope with the present pandemic.

The plaintiffs reportedly argued that since the defendant was making these books available to the public without the prior consent of the respective authors and writers, the initiative will pose a great threat to their intellectual property.

The plaintiffs reportedly said that the defendant has engaged in wilful mass copyright infringement that has caused lots of damages.

The plaintiffs argue that the IA has no legal rights to distribute the books, which it scans and uploads to its servers, via Open Library or the National Emergency Library.

While responding to the lawsuit, IA founder, Brewster Kahle reportedly said that “as a library, the Internet Archive acquires books and lends them, as libraries have always done. This supports publishing and authors and readers. Publishers suing libraries for lending books, in this case, protected digitized versions, and while schools and libraries are closed, it is not in anyone’s interest. We hope this can be resolved quickly,”.

The plaintiffs seek a declaration that the IA is committing copyright infringement, injunctions to stop the IA from sharing copyrighted work and statutory damages, which could be as much as $150,000 per infringement.

The case is ongoing.

Hachette Book Group, Inc. et al v. Internet Archive et al

Judge:John G Koeltl
Court:New York Southern District Court
Case #:1:20-cv-04160
Nature of Suit:Copyright
Cause:Copyright Infringement
Case Filed:June 01, 2020
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About Nathaniel Adebayo 569 Articles
Nathaniel is a News Reporting Intern at Nigerian Law Intellectual Property Watch (NLIPW). He has a passion for writing, capacity building and social media marketing. He is a graduate of Federal University of Technology, Minna, where he graduated with BTECHAGRIC. He is a member of Soil Science Society of Nigeria (SSSN) and the National Union of Campus Journalist (NUCJ). Nathaniel has served as Editor-in-Chief for a number of magazines and as a contributor to various online repositories. Email: anathaniel@nlipw.com

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