Microsoft brands Google settlement 'wrong'

<p>Microsoft has made one of the &quot;most outspoken attacks&quot; on the legal settlement being pursued by Google over digital rights to out of print works, the FT reports. </p><p>In a court filing made yesterday (8th September), the computer company branded the proposals, allowing Google to make content available freely as long as it is deemed not to be &quot;commercially available&quot; elsewhere, an &quot;unprecedented misuse of the judicial system&quot;. </p><p>It said: &quot;A class action settlement is the wrong mechanism, this court is the wrong venue and monopolisation is the wrong means to carry out the worthy goal of digitising and increasing the accessibility of books.&quot;</p><p>Yesterday was the final day set aside by a federal judge for formal submissions on the issue before he rules on whether to let the settlement go ahead. Other last day objectors included Yahoo!, the French Republic, Harold Bloom&mdash;on behalf of 57 authors, and the American Society of Journalists &amp; Authors, The State of Connecticut, the Canadian Standards Association, and the Japan P.E.N. Club.</p><p>Sony, by contrast, filed a brief in support of the settlement, saying it would &quot;accelerate a fundamental transformation in the means by which books are found and accessed&quot;. It added that its &quot;pro-competitive benefits&quot; outweighed any anticompetitive effects. </p><p>If approved, Google will pay $125m (&pound;75.8m) to publishers and authors in return for being able to give US internet users access to segments of out-of-print books that are still in copyright, unless rights holders specifically opt out. The deadline for this was last Friday (4th September).<br /><br />Revenue from selling full access to the books would be split between Google, publishers and the authors of the books.</p>