Google Books Settlement Paths Forward Diagram Released

GBS March Madness: Paths Forward for the Google Books SettlementJonathan Band has developed a diagram charting the possible outcomes of the Google Books settlement. Designed by Tricia Donovan, the diagram is called, “GBS March Madness: Paths Forward for the Google Books Settlement”, and has been released by the American Library Association (ALA), the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), and the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) as a poke at the NCAA’s March Madness basketball tournament. I have posted the full text of the press release below.

Library Copyright Alliance Releases Diagram Charting Many Ways Forward For Google Books Settlement

WASHINGTON DC—The American Library Association (ALA), the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), and the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) announce the release of “GBS March Madness: Paths Forward for the Google Books Settlement.” This diagram, developed by Jonathan Band, explores the many possible routes and outcomes of the Google Books Settlement, including avenues into the litigation and appeals process.

Now that the fairness hearing on the Google Books Settlement has occurred, it is up to Judge Chin to decide whether the amended settlement agreement (ASA), submitted to the Court by Google, the Authors Guild, and the Association of American Publishers, is “fair, reasonable, and adequate.” As the diagram shows, however, Judge Chin’s decision is only the next step in a very complex legal proceeding that could take a dozen more turns before reaching resolution. Despite the complexity of the diagram, it does not reflect every possible twist in the case, nor does it address the substantive reasons why a certain outcome may occur or the impact of Congressional intervention through legislation. As Band states, “the precise way forward is more difficult to predict than the NCAA tournament. And although the next step in the GBS saga may occur this March, many more NCAA tournaments will come and go before the buzzer sounds on this dispute.”

To view the diagram, please visit:

I had a good look over the Google Books settlement March Madness diagram. I am fascinated, but not surprised, at how complicated this process will continue to be for all of the parties involved. Overall, I like the layout and design, and the consistent use of color and direction. I think different software might have given it a more professional look, but the developer and designer managed to cram in a lot of information in a small amount of space. Since I am neither a lawyer nor a copyright expert, I cannot vet the content. This diagram does not take into account what litigation has already occurred.

If you were to re-create this diagram, keeping the same content, would you make any changes to the Information Design aspects? What do you think of the litigation process going forward?

[Via Brandon Butler at ARL.]

Jewel Ward
Follow Me

Jewel Ward

Founder and Consultant at Impact Zone Consultancy
Nice to meet you! I am Jewel Ward, founder of Impact Zone ( Our specialties are search engine optimization and digital stewardship for creative industry websites.

We work hard to serve our clients’ needs so they can solve their technology problems. Our goal is to enable our creative clients to succeed digitally in whatever form success means to them.

Here are three fun facts about me. I consider coffee and chocolate food groups. I am an INFJ. I love longboard surfing.
Jewel Ward
Follow Me

Latest posts by Jewel Ward (see all)

Please let me know what you think....