Publishers scored a win yesterday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland when the court granted their request for a preliminary injunction enjoining enforcement of the Maryland Act, which essentially calls for compulsory licensing of electronic literary works to libraries on “reasonable terms”. The law went into effect on January 1, 2022. The lawsuit was brought by the Association of American Publishers (AAP) against the state of Maryland and charged that the Maryland Act was preempted by the U.S. Copyright Act. The Maryland Act requires publishers to 1) offer to license copyrighted electronic literary products, such as eBooks and digital audiobooks, to public libraries, and (2) to ensure the terms of such licenses are fair. The goal was to avoid up-charging and stringent licensing restrictions on libraries.
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