Further evidence that Google is rewriting American copyright law (not saying good or bad) is the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruling yesterday that Google thumbnails is fair use. Google displays thumbnails of images found throughout the web in its Google Images section

From paidContent:

…[A]n adult company Perfect 10 sued Google on showing thumbnails, and after district court ruled against Google, the appeals court reversed some parts of the lower court’s decision, but more importantly it found that Google’s image search didn’t violate Perfect 10’s copyright, even though Google reproduced entirely, albeit in thumbnail format, Perfect 10’s photos.

The main language in the decision: ‘In this case, Google has put Perfect 10’s thumbnail images (along with millions of other thumbnail images) to a use fundamentally different than the use intended by Perfect 10. In doing so, Google has provided a significant benefit to the public.

For bloggers, the extension of the Fair Use Doctrine (wikipwedia) is probably good. Bloggers thrive on the free use of portions of others’ content for purposes of commentary and critique.

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