I know that the digital world is changing how we read and how we distribute books. I have a few problems with this. The first one is… my general mistrust of Google. Why should this lovable company who changes their artwork every day to make my searching enjoyable, be mistrusted?
I think they are getting too big for their britches.
Left and right, artists are making waves about what Google is trying to do. According to my research they are infringing on the rights of artists and photographers.
“Artists Sue Google Over Copyright Infringement.” They are also the backers behind the Orphans Work Act. If you do not know about this and are an artist, you absolutely must learn. I mean it. Stop what you are doing and research this. What happens with this will change your income for the rest of your life. I have written about it before in an article for Best of Artists and Artisans, and there are links in the article for further information. If we are not careful, Google will become the God and keeper of all.
In a nutshell, Google wants to take the books that are out of print and make them available. Sounds real sweet, but watch out for that wolves teeth. As my southern friend says, “Katy bar the door.”
First of all, if I write a book, and it is out of print, what gives them the rights to reproduce that book without permission? They are also proposing that this be done with artwork, have a depository of artwork that people can come and browse and use. If artists do not claim their artwork and step up and say, “No, you can not use it, or this belongs to me,” then well tough poop for you. This puts the burden of copyright ownership on the artists. As it stands right now, artwork is copyrighted the moment it is created. I don’t have to search for my artwork all over the place. I don’t have to go to a Goggle provided website and pay to have my work protected and say it is mine. It is mine. PERIOD! For more information on this please read the article that I wrote for Best of Artists and Artisans 2008.
I may be lulled to enter blindly into the idea of digital books lovingly created and made affordable and accessible through Google, but I have a genuine mistrust of them. And what is sad is that I feel like they are my own child. I nurtured them. I still do. They are a part of my everyday life. Yet, they have too much control.
I am never one to spread discontent. However, in this case, I will stand on my soap box, behind my artists table and computer. I’ll give a very suspicious glance at Google as the writer/artist in me speaks, no shouts loudly. “ARTISTS AND WRITERS BEWARE! There is a wolf in sheep’s clothing!”
So what are your thoughts?
Bridgette Mongeon is a sculptor, writer and educator as well as a public speaker. Her blog can be found at https://creativesculpture.com. She is also the owner and creator of the God’s Word Collectible Sculpture series Follow the artists on twitter twitter.com/Sculptorwriter twitter.com/creategodsword Facebook http://www.facebook.com/bridgette.mongeon Listen to The Creative Christian Podcast or the Inspiration/Generation Podcast Click on Podcast Host Bios for a listing of all podcasts Listen to the Art and Technology Podcast