Copyright Fight Brewing Over Amazon's Kindle 2

By Kristopher A. Nelson in

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Copyright Fight Brewing Over Amazon’s Kindle 2 | Threat Level from Wired.com:

“They don’t have the right to read a book out loud,” said Paul Aiken, executive director of the Authors Guild. “That’s an audio right, which is derivative under copyright law.”


Wendy Seltzer, a legal scholar at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University, said no rights are being violated. Amazon’s newest gadget, she said, “is enabling another feature to make further lawful uses of that book.”


Michael Kwun, of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, has an in-depth posting on the EFF’s DeepLinks Blog that he said debunks the guild’s theory. He wrote that the synthesized voice is not a derivative work, as the guild claims, that is “based upon one or more preexisting works which, as a whole, represents an original work of authorship.”

I suspect that the Author’s Guild is incorrect on this as a matter of copyright law. I wonder, though, if perhaps they are speaking in regards to a contract that might exist with Amazon that is more restrictive than copyright generally?

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