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posted by Fnord666 on Saturday June 13 2020, @02:16PM   Printer-friendly
from the never-let-them-see-fear dept.

Internet Archive ends "emergency library" early to appease publishers:

The Internet Archive has ended its National Emergency Library programs two weeks earlier than originally scheduled, the organization announced in a Wednesday blog post.

"We moved up our schedule because, last Monday, four commercial publishers chose to sue Internet Archive during a global pandemic," the group wrote. The online library called on publishers to "call off their costly assault."

[...] If the publishers dropped their lawsuit now, they would be tacitly conceding the legality of CDL[1] and potentially endangering the revenues they currently earn from licensing e-books to libraries for digital checkout. Also, the Internet Archive's decision to stop its emergency lending now is unlikely to protect it from liability for lending it has done over the last three months.

A win for the publishers could easily bankrupt the Internet Archive. Copyright law allows statutory damages for willful infringement to go as high as $150,000 per work, and the Internet Archive has scanned 1.4 million works and offered them for online download. So the Internet Archive could easily face damages in the billions of dollars if it loses the lawsuit. That's far beyond the group's ability to pay.

[1] CDL - controlled digital lending - One electronic loan per physical copy in the library.

Publishers Sue the Internet Archive Over its Open Library, Declare it a Pirate Site
Authors Fume as Online Library "Lends" Unlimited Free Books
Internet Archive Suspends E-Book Lending "Waiting Lists" During U.S. National Emergency

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 15 2020, @09:19PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 15 2020, @09:19PM (#1008336)

    Don't forget: people happily fork over their $$$$$ to the content publishers.

    The publisher then gives $ to the politicians to keep the rules in their favor, $ to the performers and creators, lose $ on most of what they back, but ultimately then take $$ for themselves.

    And most people find this system acceptable.

    The creators who don't market it themselves. Some make $$$. A very few make $$$$$. Most don't make even $. (In other words, those middle men really do have reasons to exist).

    Many consumers who don't want to do this break the law. Most probably get away with it. The few who don't are then hounded for $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ when they only have $$$$$. Nothing prevents the consumer from forgoing their music and instead giving their $$$$$ to the politicians so that the law gets changed. One could form a PAC for this purpose, come to that. But such people have already proven they don't want to work within the confines of the law or change it, it's more convenient to just break the law and hope you ain't the one caught.