Google and the Authors' Guild are giving the world's authors and publishers at least two more months to contemplate the digital rights issues involved in the search giant's plans to create the world's biggest online digital library.

"Google, the US Author's Guild and the Association of American Publishers have acceded to a two-month delay to the resolution of the Google Settlement to allow those affected 'more time to consider [their] rights and options'," reports The Bookseller.

A coalition of high-profile copyright holders, including singer Arlo Guthrie, John Steinbeck's heirs and Philip K Dick's trustees, asked a federal court judge last week to give all authors another four months to respond to last year's lengthy settlement that followed the Author's Guild taking legal action against Google for widespread copyright violation in the development of Google Book Search.

Perpetual digital rights

The group calls the settlement 'unprecedented' in scope and say they need more time to make a "decision about perpetual digital rights."

"Any delay will be relief to many who are just coming to terms with the 300-page Settlement, which was agreed between Google and the US Authors' Guild and the American Association of Publishers in October last year" adds The Bookseller.

Google proposes extending the Settlement agreement by 60 days, but the authors' coalition argued that "two months' time [was] insufficient to understand the implications of a settlement of this scope".

"The scope of the proposed is unprecedented," the lawyers wrote. "For authors who do not opt out, the Settlement if approved would impose a complex scheme for the wholesale allocation of rights and remedies, and compensation for the exploitation of those rights, in the digital world."

Via The Bookseller