Still waiting…

Posted: November 9th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: In the News | Tags: | Comments Off on Still waiting…

The Google Book Settlement is not yet settled. Opposition to the settlement has been vocal and growing, and today’s New York Times notes that the parties have requested an extension to Friday, 13 November, to submit a revised settlement for the court’s review.

“Google Book Settlement Delayed Indefinitely”

Posted: September 25th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: In the News | Tags: | Comments Off on “Google Book Settlement Delayed Indefinitely”

In the wake of growing objections and concerns, judicial review of the Google Book Settlement has been delayed to give the parties an opportunity to revise the settlement terms to address concerns from the U.S. Department of Justice, numerous private parties, and foreign governments.

For information about the latest turn of events in what has been a much-delayed conclusion to the dispute between associations of authors and publishers and Google, Inc. over Google’s program to digitize books, the New York Times published a short summary, available online.

2009 Los Angeles Times Festival of Books

Posted: April 23rd, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: In the News | Tags: , | Comments Off on 2009 Los Angeles Times Festival of Books

The book review section may be gone, but the Los Angeles Times’ Festival of Books lives on. UCLA hosts the festival this weekend, 25-26 April, and it’s a must-visit event for those of us who live and read locally and for many others who make the trek to L.A. for panels, booksignings, and a wide array of exhibitors.

Festival information is available online, television coverage of selected programs will be provided by C-SPAN’s BookTV, and local hero Mark Sarvas will be offering his take via The Elegant Variation. Show up, log on, or tune in this weekend.

Resources and Alerts from The Authors Guild

Posted: February 15th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: In the News | Tags: , , , | Comments Off on Resources and Alerts from The Authors Guild

In addition to its useful resources for members including contract reviews, referrals, and other services, the Authors Guild also shares information about developments in publishing law and related matters with interested nonmembers via the Guild’s website. Two recent examples:

In the wake of the settlement in the Authors Guild v. Google action, the Authors Guild made a series of key documents available on its website, including a helpful distillation of the settlement agreement. More recently, after the announcement of the Kindle 2 by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, the Guild advised caution for writers crossing the intersection of electronic and audio rights. Although this potential conflict has been on the radar of many of us who negotiate publishing contracts, the announcement of the forthcoming Kindle’s “text to speech” feature brought questions related to these rights into sharp relief.

Far from being a challenge to the right of individual readers to read aloud as some too-quick commentators alleged, the Guild’s alert was appropriate and appropriately swift, raising a legitimate concern about a matter that should be considered carefully, and not only by authors. I’m thinking of parties on both sides of the negotiation table. Authors, artists, and other contributors need to understand what rights they’re granting and what rights they’re reserving, and to do so mindfully and strategically. Publishers—especially those whose contract boilerplate has not been reviewed in a few years—need to consider what rights they need and how best to delineate those rights in the contracts on which their business rests.

Lisa Lucas at the Tucson Festival of Books

Posted: February 15th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Lucas LLP News | Tags: | Comments Off on Lisa Lucas at the Tucson Festival of Books

Lisa Lucas will be speaking to attendees of the inaugural Tucson Festival of Books on Saturday, March 14, 2009 from 1:00pm-2:00pm at a session entitled “The Path to Publication: An Attorney’s Perspective.” Lisa will discuss topics of interest to writers of both fiction and nonfiction and will address:

+ separating copyright fact from fiction;
+ seeking help from agents, attorneys, and other advisors;
+ deciding whether to pursue a contract from an established publishing house or to self publish; and
+ identifying common publishing contract pitfalls.

The session will be held in room 204 of Koffler Hall on the University of Arizona campus in Tucson. Information about the Festival’s sessions, book signings, and other events is available on its website.

Online royalty statements: A modest proposal

Posted: November 29th, 2008 | Author: | Filed under: In the News | Tags: , | Comments Off on Online royalty statements: A modest proposal

Pat Holt makes a modest proposal on the “Holt Uncensored” blog:

If you were an author, wouldn’t it be great if your publisher gave you a password to your own royalty account?
This would be an online, frequently updated, always accessible, entirely confidential page on your publisher’s website that would replace the current system.

As frequently as you wish, you could check sales of your book, the rate of returns, the percentage taken out for reserves and varying royalty rates for bulk sales, special sales, premium sales, electronic sales, and so forth.

Given the amount of money many publishers spend on internal systems to share data among departments and to transmit data to wholesalers and distributors, why would the development and implementation of a system to share data with authors be an outrageous proposition? Read’s Pat’s complete post on the Holt Uncensored blog and you may find yourself asking the same question.