Google won't include Japanese publisher's titles in digital library

Posted at 12/13/12 5:38 PM

TOKYO - Japanese publisher Kadokawa Group Holdings Inc. said Thursday it has agreed with Google Inc. that books published by the company will be excluded from the Internet giant's project to scan library collections worldwide due to concerns over copyright infringement.

Kadokawa said it is the first major Japanese publisher to protect its titles housed by libraries from digitization under the Google project and expressed hope that other publishers in Japan will follow suit.

The Google project is aimed at creating "a comprehensive, searchable, virtual card catalog of all books in all languages" to help people discover new books. The search engine provider has teamed up with public and university libraries around the world to allow users to search and view abstracts of books.

But the scanning project has stirred controversy as the company digitized library books without obtaining approval from authors.

Kadokawa said the publisher and writers are "in the same boat" and that the company intends to provide as many e-book titles as possible to readers while protecting copyrights.

The Japanese publisher said it has been selling some electronic book contents via Google online store since September with approval from authors.