September 6, 2022
Publishers File Opposition Brief in Case Against Internet Archive for Blatant Scanning and Distribution of Literary Works on Industrial Scale
On September 2, 2022 publishers filed the latest brief in the copyright infringement lawsuit against Internet Archive (“IA”), first filed on June 1, 2020 in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.
The brief follows publishers’ July 7, 2022 request for summary judgement against the Internet Archive, which explained that both the law and facts of the case indisputably point to infringement and do not require a trial.
The most recent filing comprehensively negates the Internet Archive’s own motion for summary judgement, which publishers believe is meritless and misleading.
The plaintiffs — Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins Publishers, Penguin Random House, and Wiley — brought the lawsuit on behalf of themselves and their authors after the Internet Archive refused to halt its infringement of tens of thousands of their books.
Highlights of the publishers’ opposition brief include the following arguments:
- Appellate courts have previously solidly rejected the first sale and fair use arguments asserted by the Internet Archive, including expressly rejecting these unfounded points:
- Congress “accidentally” forgot to extend first sale principles to digital files.
- Retransmitting copies in another medium is “transformative;” and
- Possession of a physical copy magically negates unauthorized copying and distribution.
- Contrary to its arguments, the Internet Archive has no way of knowing whether physical and digital copies of a book are in circulation at the same time, and with respect to the “National Emergency Library,” it completely abandoned even the pretense of this rationale.
- The Internet Archive has shown contempt for authors and the rule of law. Moreover, no one but the Internet Archive has designated the Internet Archive as a special institution possessing special powers under the law.
- The Internet Archive is directly competing with authorized eBook channels.
Read the brief here.
AAP | The Association of American Publishers represents the leading book, journal, and education publishers in the United States on matters of law and policy, advocating for outcomes that incentivize the publication of creative expression, professional content, and learning solutions. As essential participants in local markets and the global economy, our members invest in and inspire the exchange of ideas, transforming the world we live in one word at a time. Find us online at publishers.org or on Twitter and Instagram at @AmericanPublish.