While this is a US story and not one that would normally be within the remit of TNPS to cover, the global ramifications are significant, so for our international readership the news is that Amazon has conceded defeat in its defence of the law suit launched by several major publishers to stop Audible providing captions of copyrighted work.
As reported here last month, a settlement was agreed in mid-January –
But only today has the detail of the agreement been made public, and there’s nothing for Amazon to be happy with.
The official judgment decrees that Audible is,
permanently restrained, enjoined, and prohibited from creating, generating, reproducing, modifying, distributing, publishing, or displaying, without express authorization from the owners or exclusive licensees of the United States digital text rights, written text derived from … audiobook versions of Publishers’ Works for any product or service created or offered by Audible. This prohibition does not apply to any text in the public domain.
Audible is further,
permanently restrained, enjoined, and prohibited from (a) inducing or (b) knowingly and materially contributing to, any actor other than Audible in the creation, generation, reproduction, modification, distribution, publication, or display of written text derived from the audiobook versions of Publishers’ Works,
with the same exception of public domain content.
Read the full injunction here.
Amazon is no stranger to losing legal disputes, but it’s big enough to roll with the punch and move on. The damage is more to pride than pocket, and a reminder to the company that publishers will fight their corner to protect their own interests.