Chin pushes Google Settlement deadline to 2012

The judge in the Google Settlement case has extended the deadline for talks between the internet giant and the publishers and authors involved.

The deal, which involves a revised book-scanning agreement for out of print titles that may also be in copyright, has already been contested for six years, with five publisher plaintiffs, the Authors Guild and the Association of American Publishers (AAP) objecting to Google's digital library plans.

At a hearing yesterday in New York, Manhattan federal court judge Denny Chin told lawyers that he was "still hopeful" a settlement could be reached, though warned "you're essentially starting from scratch", reports Reuters.  

Chin has laid out a new schedule in which legal briefs can be filed up to July 2012.

AAP president Tom Allen said: "We informed the court that the AAP, the five publisher plaintiffs and Google have made good progress toward a settlement that would resolve the pending litigation regarding the Google Library Project. We are working to resolve the differences that remain between the parties and reach terms that are mutually agreeable."

The lawyer for the Authors Guild, Michael Boni, said the group "very much wants to work out a settlement" with the company.

The decision follows judge Chin's decision to reject the settlement last March, urging it to be amended to include only books whose copyright owners agree to the arrangement.