Amazon.com’s Audible had been sued by the US top publishers for copyright infringement on Friday. The aim behind the copyright infringement is to block a planned rollout feature called “Audible Captions” which displays the text on the screen as a book is narrated. The book publishers are totally against the new text-to-speech feature launched by Audible.
Seven members of the Association of American Publishers (AAP) including HarperCollins Publishers, Penguin Random House, Hachette Book Group, Simon & Schuster, and Macmillan Publishers have filed the lawsuit.
AAP said, “Essentially Audible wants to provide the text as well as the sound of books without the authorization of copyright holders, despite only having the right to sell audiobooks,” AAP said in a statement”.
The above statement clearly indicates that Amazon Audible has the right to sell audiobooks only and it does not have the authority to provide text and sound of the books through its platform.
All the seven AAP members filed the lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Amazon Audibel did not immediately respond to the lawsuit filed against it.
The Audible’s full statement, “We are surprised and disappointed by this action and any implication that we have not been speaking and working with publishers about this feature, which has not yet launched. Captions was developed because we, like so many leading educators and parents, want to help kids who are not reading engage more through listening. This feature would allow such listeners to follow along with a few lines of machine-generated text as they listen to the audio performance. It is not and was never intended to be a book. We disagree with the claims that this violates any rights and look forward to working with publishers and members of the professional creative community to help them better understand the educational and accessibility benefits of this innovation.”
For your knowledge, Audible owned by Amazon.com sells digital audiobooks, radio and TV programs, and audio version old magazines and newspapers through its platform.