Sunday, January 27, 2008

Has Anyone Figured Out What the Amendment Was About?

In the last post I talked about how new-generation infringer HighBeam was casually slipped into the now-dying settlement at the last minute.

You'll note that I didn't say anything specific about, which was also grandfathered in by the settlement amendment. That's because the objection team has never been able to pin down what was supposed to cover. Does anyone out there have any insights? If so, please drop me a line at

We do know that the publication list at the official settlement website ( has HighBeam and Amazon lists, consisting of hundreds of publications, to supplement the "original" list of thousands of publications. But that still doesn't tell us where these publications are accessed through Amazon. At the time of the filing of the amendment in the summer of 2006, an Amazon-owned search engine in development, called A9, was up on the Amazon page. A9 is no longer there. And if you go directly to the A9 site, you don't get any clues -- at least none that I see.

Edward Hasbrouck, author of the Practical Nomad travel books, believed that the Amazon amendment was designed to legitimate infringements by Amazon's "search inside the book" feature. See Edward's compelling emails with class counsel in the September 7, 2006, item on this blog headlined "Author Edward Hasbrouck: Why I'm Opting Out." See also Edward's own September 24, 2006, blog post headlined "Lies from 'my' lawyers in copyright class action lawsuit," .

Hasbrouck supplied a declaration discussing much of this, which points to one of the fundamental flaws of the settlement -- something that very well could invalidate its injunction against future lawsuits by class members. The settlement purports to release "supplemental participating publishers," but no one knows who they are!


Post a Comment

<< Home