Pamela Samuelson

Pamela Samuelson Leads Charge to Extend Deadline for Google Book Search Settlement

The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 15, 2009 by Jennifer Howard

“People I’ve talked to have been pretty confused about it, and they don’t know how to properly assess the pros and cons,” she told me. “Academics have a lot of things they’d rather do than wade through a couple hundred pages” of legalese.

Pamela Samuelson Raises Antitrust Concerns over Google Book Search Settlement

-O’Reilly “Radar” blog, April 17, 2009 by Pamela Samuelson

The Book Search agreement is not really a settlement of a dispute over whether scanning books to index them is fair use. It is a major restructuring of the book industry’s future without meaningful government oversight. The market for digitized orphan books could be competitiveֽ but will not be if this settlement is approved as is.

-The New York Times “Bits” blog, April 17, 2009 by Miguel Helft

Ms. Samuelson also points out that many authors of orphan works may want to grant far greater access to their own books that would be allowed by the settlement. “If asked, the authors of orphan books in major research libraries might well prefer for their books to be available under Creative Commons licenses or put in the public domain so that fellow researchers could have greater access to themֽ” Ms. Samuelson wrote.

-The Recorder, April 20, 2009 by Zusha Elinson (requires registration; go to G:\Law School in the News\News Clips for article)

Pamela Samuelson said the issue of orphaned works should be handled by legislators, not a settlement in a class action. “Usually if you want a compulsory license you have to go to Congress,” she said. Samuelson said she favors a scenario in which the Internet Archive and other digital librariesֽ not just Google, would get a license to scan the books and make them available online.

-San Jose Mercury News, April 28, 2009 by Elise Ackerman
“It is clear to us that the settlementֽ if approvedֽ will shape the future of readingֽ researchֽ writing and publication practices for decades to comeֽ” Professor Pamela Samuelson of the University of California-Berkeley School of Law wrote in an April 27 letter to the judge.

Pamela Samuelson and Tara Wheatland Propose Statutory Damage Reforms, April 12, 2009 by Nate Anderson

The authors aren’t opposed to the idea of statutory damages, which were designed to provide relief in cases where it was quite difficult to quantify the actual losses suffered by the copyright holder…. But ending up on the hook for up to $150,000 just for swapping a single song on a file-sharing network? Craziness—and far too likely to be used against regular people. “In today’s world, where the average person in her day-to-day life interacts with many copyrighted works in a way that may implicate copyright law,” says the paper, “the dangers posed by the lack of meaningful constraints on statutory damage awards are particularly acute.”

Pamela Samuelson Clarifies Copyright Law’s Impact on Public Domain

New York Times, September 29, by Noam Cohen

“The law is pretty clear that laws and judicial opinions and regulations are not protected by copyright laws,” said Pamela Samuelson, a professor at Boalt Hall School of Law…. “That isn’t to say that people aren’t going to try.” A favorite method of trying, as Ms. Samuelson and other legal scholars explain, is to copyright the accoutrements surrounding the public material.