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Google Sounds The Retreat In Book Scanning Project

Google has been negotiating with book publishers to allow readers to rent books online for a week --- one more sign that Google is in full retreat over its controversial plan to scan copyrighted books without copyright holders' permissions.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the books would not be downloadable or printable, and could only be read online, although that may change.

For now, the plan appears to be in flux because Google has suggested a rental fee of 10 percent of the book's list price, which publishers say is too low.

The negotiations are one more sign that Google is in full flight from its original plan to scan thousands of copyrighted books without permission, and make them searchable online.

Google has been sued by authors and publishers over the plan, and some librarians have criticized the search giant for it as well.

But the Google backtracking may be as much to do with pressure from competitors as it has to do with those suits. Amazon has already been negotiating with publishers about an online book rental plan, and that has most likely spurred Google into action.

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