Judge to authors: Google scans are good for you

US authors have lost an eight-year legal battle to stop Google scanning books.

New York court judge Denny Chin has thrown out a complaint brought by the Authors Guild and has ruled that Google’s scanning and indexing of books from library collections is fair use.

The judge decided Google’s book project has public benefits and qualifies as fair use under US. copyright law. He added: “A reasonable fact-finder could only find that Google Books enhances the sales of books to the benefit of copyright holders.”

The Authors Guild is planning to appeal against the decision.

US publishers reached a settlement with Google last year which gave the publishers the right to remove their books from the Google Library.

In Europe, the Google project is only scanning titles that are out of copyright.