Judge delays Google Settlement

<p>The judge overseeing the Google Settlement has extended the opt-out deadline by four months, from 5th May to 4th September. It means the Fairness Hearing, at which the judge will either pass or throw out the Settlement, has now been put back to 7th October--almost one year after it was agreed, and just one week before the Frankfurt Book Fair.<br /><br />It means that judge Denny Chin has agreed to the petition sent by a number of authors, and their heirs, to the four-month delay, and reject the offer of a two-month delay put forward by Google and plaintiffs, the US Author&#39;s Guild and Association of American Publishers. It has also emerged that a group academic authors requested a six-month extension of the dates.<br /><br />Lawyers acting for seven authors and their heirs, including heirs to both the John Steinbeck and Philip K Dick estates, sent their letter to the New York judge Denny Chin on 24th April, saying that &quot;more time [was] required simply to understand the complex terms of the agreement&quot; and that &quot;substantial defects in notice of the Settlement undermine authors&#39; ability to assess their rights&quot;.<br /><br />In a letter to the judge sent the same day, lawyers acting for the US Author&#39;s Guild (but with the authorization of Google and the Association of American Publishers) said the arguments presented by the authors were &quot;without merit&quot;, but that a 60-day delay would give them more time to digest the Settlement.</p>