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Services » Scholarly Communication » Learn More About Scholarly Communication, Open Access, and Copyright » Copyright Cases and Related Litigation » Authors Guild v. HathiTrust

Authors Guild v. HathiTrust

The Authors Guild v. HathiTrust case centers on a copyright infringement case filed by the Authors Guild (also notable as a plaintiff in the Google Books case) against HathiTrust, a not-for-profit library organization dedicated to making a limited number of uses of digitized books.  

The District Court issued a strong opinion in October, dismissing the case in favor of HathiTrust.  The Court characterized HathiTrust's activities -- indexing books for search, making backups available for libraries that own copies of particular books, and providing access to people with print disabilities -- as an "invaluable contribution to the progress of science and cultivation of the arts that at the same time effectuates the ideals espoused by the ADA."

The Authors Guild appealed the decision to the Second Circuit.  In June, 2014, the Second Circuit affirmed fair use of HathiTrust's disability copies and its full-text indexing; affirmed the Authors Guild's lack of standing; and remanded to consider whether any plaintiffs have standing to challenge library preservation copying.

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Last Edited: 19 October 2014