The Battle Over Books: Authors & Publishers Take on the Google Books Library Project | Los Angeles Public Library
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The Battle Over Books: Authors & Publishers Take on the Google Books Library Project

Presented in conjunction with The WIRED Speaker Series
Monday, June 12, 2006
Episode Summary
A provocative discussion about the competing interests and issues raised by The Google Books Library Project, and whether a universal digital repository of our collective knowledge is in our future. With: Allan Adler, Association of American Publishers; David Drummond, Google; Fontayne Holmes, Los Angeles Public Library; Jonathan Kirsch, author and lawyer, Lawrence Lessig, Stanford Law School, and Gary Wolf, WIRED Magazine.

Participant(s) Bio
Allan Adler is Vice President for Legal and Governmental Affairs in the Washington, D.C. office of the Association of American Publishers (AAP), the national trade organization which represents our Nation's book and journal publishing industries, where he deals with intellectual property, freedom of speech, new technology, and other industry-related issues. From 1989 until joining AAP in 1996, Mr. Adler practiced law as a member of Cohn and Marks, the Washington, D.C. communications law firm. His practice focused primarily on government relations in areas of federal law, regulation and policy concerning information, telecommunications & technology.

David Drummond is Google's Vice President, Corporation Development and works with Google's management team to evaluate and drive new strategic business opportunities, including strategic alliances, mergers and acquisitions. He also serves as Google's general counsel.

Fontayne Holmes is the former City Librarian for the Los Angeles Public Library, the library system for the city of Los Angeles. It serves the largest population of any library in the US, with its Central Library, 73 branches and web-based services. She has successfully managed the largest library construction program in the nation, which has rebuilt more than 90 percent of the city's libraries. She also has led the library in its successful role of bridging the digital divide in every community in Los Angeles through her commitment to technology. The 3,000 computers in libraries citywide provide everyone with free and easy access to information and the valuable resources of the World Wide Web. She continues to use technology to automate library operations and services and provide equity of access for everyone.

Jonathan Kirsch is the author of the best-selling God Against the Gods: The History of the War Between Monotheism and Polytheism (Viking 2004) and nine other books, including the national best-seller The Harlot by the Side of the Road: Forbidden Tales of the Bible (Ballantine). His next book is A History of the End of the World: How the Bible's Most Controversial Book Changed the Course of Western Civilization (HarperSanFrancisco 2006). Kirsch is also a book columnist for the Los Angeles Times, a broadcaster for NPR affiliates KCRW-FM and KPCC-FM in Southern California, an Adjunct Professor on the faculty of New York University, and an attorney specializing in publishing law and intellectual property in Los Angeles.

Lawrence Lessig is a professor at Stanford Law School, the Founder and Chairman of Creative Commons, and the author of Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace; The Future of Ideas: The Fate of the Commons in a Connected World; and Free Culture: The Nature and Future of Creativity.

Gary Wolf is a contributing editor at WIRED, where he reports regularly on the dreams and realities of the information age, and has written The Great Library of Amazonia, about's Search-Inside-the-Book project, and The Curse of Xanadu, about Theodor Holm Nelson's thirty-year effort to build a universal information system. In the mid-nineties, Wolf was executive producer of WIRED's online division, WIRED Digital. His books include Dumb Money: Adventures of a Day Trader (2000), with Joey Anuff; and WIRED - A Romance (2003), both published by Random House. Wolf is currently a Knight Fellow in the Department of Communications at Stanford University