Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Tuesday 16 August 2005

Stymied By Publishers, Google To Digitize Bazooka Joe Comics

If Impasse Prolonged, Google To Continue With Baseball Cards, Shopping Coupons

Rebuffed last week by publishers and trade groups, forcing them to suspend scanning copyrighted material of some of the world's largest libraries and universities, Google announced today that they will move forward with their Google Print project and begin digitizing the Bazooka Joe comics.

Bazooka Bubble Gum became famous for its' Bazooka Joe comics that they included in each piece of gum sold. Bazooka Joe was first introduced in the gum in 1953 and now has over 700 comic strips strips in its' archives.

"It's a start," lamented Adam Smith, a senior product manager at Google. "We want to scan the world, so this is as good a place to start as any."

Google had to temporarily halt its' Google Print program, that will make searchable, digital copies of the vast contents of three university libraries, to give publishers and other copyright holders the chance to opt out of having their protected works copied.

Google has reached agreements to scan digital copies of some of the world's largest university library collections, including Harvard, Stanford, the University of Michigan, as well as with Oxford University and the New York Public Library.

Publishers and a publishing trade association called the opt-out offer inadequate, saying that the search giant is trying to upend copyright law.

Patricia Schroeder, the former Colorado congresswoman who is president and chief executive of the Association of American Publishers, the trade group, said one concern is "How is an author even supposed to know that his or her work is being copied?"

Ms. Schroeder said that the publishers were in favor of expanding access to the content that they publish, but that some publishers have said they were concerned that Google might begin to sell advertising related to the results of searches of copyrighted material without sharing the revenues with the copyright owners.

Google defended its project as a benefit to all parties.

``These copies are permitted under copyright law,'' said a Google spokesman in an e-mail interview Friday. ``By participating in the Google Print program and making the full text of their books searchable via Google, publishers and authors can attract new readers and increase book sales.''

Google has arbitrarily set a November 1st deadline for publishers to respond, advising which copyright material it can't use.

Bazooka, through a company spokesperson, said it is "thrilled to be scanned" and indicated that it may integrate it into the storyline of the Bazooka Joe comics.

Smith indicated that, if the impasse with publishers isn't resolved, the Google Print program will continue with its mission, and take on scanning baseball cards, shopping coupons and fortune cookie strips.

After clearing Paula Abul, rumors are circulating that American Idol is planning on replacing Rueben and Simon as judges with Carl Bernstein and Bob Woodward

Male Chefs To Join Crawford Protest

Will Demand Answers Why Female Named To Exec White House Position

Hundreds of male chefs plan to arrive in Crawford, Texas today, to begin protesting the White House naming Cristeta Comerford as
the first woman to be the White House executive chef.

The group of male chefs say that the President had not been "upfront" with them during the lengthy selection process and they want answers.

"We have a long tradition to protect," offered Rafael Chenzo, a deserts chef from Richmond, VA.

Former White House Executive Chef Walter Scheib III was "pushed out" this past February by Mrs. Bush. Susan Whitson, the first lady's press secretary said that the "mission was accomplished" as to the quality of the White House cuisine and it was "time for a change."

"Picking Cris as the first woman chef is a good publicity move, I expect," said the ousted Scheib.

The chefs want to ask to ask the President if he knew of the move and when he knew it. They also want answers if there are plans to move other male chefs out of government positions.

The male chefs will be joining the protest of Cindy Sheehan, the mother of a slain U.S. soldier who has been camped out in Crawford for over 10-days, demanding to talk with President Bush and find out what "the noble cause" is that her son died for in Iraq.

Sheehan said that she "welcomes" the chefs to "Camp Crawford" and wished them well in their protest.

"We'll be out there, with our signs, toques and aprons," said Scheib. "We won't be leaving until the President talks with us."

Scheib indicated that the male chefs will run a food concession, for the other protesters.

"It will be a well-fed protest," said Scheib. "And we know some dishes, that, once they start cooking, and the President gets a whiff, he'll coming running to us.

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