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My 1,000
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Date: Aug 14, 2005

Level: Harder (Try the easier lesson.)

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Audio: (2:12 - 259.7 KB - 16kbps)

1,000 IDEAS FOR ESL CLASSES: Breaking News English.com's e-Book

THE ARTICLE

Google’s heady aim of scanning millions of books, to be freely searchable on the Internet, has encountered a major hitch. Publishers are up in arms over what they see as flagrant violations of copyright. They fear the duplication of copyrighted books will seriously damage publishing, akin to how illegal downloading and pirating has afflicted the music industry. Google Print involves scanning books from the university libraries of Harvard, Stanford, Michigan and Oxford. Google said it is using the books legitimately under the “fair use” copyright law, which allows people to reproduce small amounts of copyrighted material for personal use. Google has suspended scanning the books until November and has asked publishers to say which copyrighted material cannot be used.

Publishers are irked at what they perceive as Google’s attempt at upending copyright law by placing the onus on writers to seek out instances of infringement. Industry analysts put the disagreement down to outmoded copyright laws that are centuries old. Legal procedures to cope with the breakneck speed of developments in electronic information cannot be enacted in time to safeguard intellectual copyright. A Google press release* stated: “We’re going to continue talking about Google Print with our partners and the publishing industry. These discussions have been crucial in helping to build a program that benefits the industry and, most important, the millions of users who’ll be able to discover new books.”

* http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2005/08/making-books-easier-to-find.html

WARM-UPS

1. BOOKS: In pairs / groups, talk about your history with books. Use these prompts to help your conversation: First book / Best book / Book collection / Authors / E-books / English books / Harry Potter / Cost / Libraries / The future … Change partners and report on what your first partners said.

2. ZERO COPYRIGHT: Imagine a world in which all copyright has been abandoned. You can download anything you want for free. In pairs / groups, discuss how zero copyright would affect your life. Discuss what you would download from the following:

  • Music
  • Books
  • English learning materials
  • Government archives
  • Movies
  • Art
  • TV shows
  • Other

3. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words are most interesting and which are most boring.

Google / books / the Internet / publishers / copyright / downloading music / Harvard / Oxford University / information technology / discovering new books

Have a chat about the topics you liked. For more conversation, change topics and partners frequently.

4. GOOGLE: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word “Google”. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.

5. GOOGLE PRINT OPINIONS: In pairs / groups, talk about how far you agree with these opinions on copyright and Google Print:

  1. I think all of the world’s books should be on the Internet.
  2. Paper books will disappear one day so everything will be digital.
  3. Google really wants to increase the knowledge available to the world.
  4. If Google succeeds, many writers will not be able to afford to write.
  5. Putting books on the Internet will increase literacy. Google is wonderful.
  6. Google is really only interested in profits.
  7. I would love to have books from the world’s best libraries on my computer.
  8. Publishing companies really need to get up to date. Paper is old.

6. QUICK DEBATE: Students A think copyright laws should be abandoned. Students B think copyright laws are essential. Change partners often.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Look at the article’s headline and guess whether these sentences are true (T) or false (F):

a.

Google wants to put millions of books on the Internet.

T / F

b.

Publishers are cooperating to expedite Google’s project.

T / F

c.

Google Print involves scanning all of the books sold by Amazon.com.

T / F

d.

All of the scanning will be finished in November.

T / F

e.

Publishers accused Google of turning copyright laws upside down.

T / F

f.

Experts say copyright laws are too out of date.

T / F

g.

Information technology is moving at a similar pace to new legislation.

T / F

h.

Google wants millions of people to discover new books.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article:

a.

heady

burden

b.

hitch

beset

c.

up in arms

turning upside down

d.

afflicted

exciting

e.

suspended

furious

f.

upending

protect

g.

breakneck

stumbling block

h.

onus

vital

i.

safeguard

rapid

j.

crucial

shelved

3. PHRASE MATCH: Match the following phrases from the article (sometimes more than one combination is possible):

a.

encountered a

afflicted the music industry

b.

Publishers are up

that are centuries old

c.

flagrant

intellectual copyright

d.

pirating has

violations of copyright

e.

reproduce small amounts of

on writers

f.

placing the onus

major hitch

g.

outmoded copyright laws

able to discover new books

h.

breakneck

copyrighted material

i.

safeguard

in arms

j.

millions of users who’ll be

speed

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words in the column on the right into the correct space.

Google delays book scanning

Google’s _______ aim of scanning millions of books, to be freely searchable on the Internet, has encountered a major _______. Publishers are up in arms over what they see as _______ violations of copyright. They fear the duplication of copyrighted books will seriously damage publishing, _______ to how illegal downloading and pirating has _______ the music industry. Google Print involves scanning books from the university libraries of Harvard, Stanford, Michigan and Oxford. Google said it is using the books _______ under the “fair use” copyright law, which allows people to _______ small amounts of copyrighted material for personal use. Google has suspended scanning the books until November and has asked publishers to say which copyrighted _______ cannot be used.

 

 

reproduce
flagrant
heady
legitimately
akin
hitch
material
afflicted

Publishers are _______ at what they perceive as Google’s attempt at upending copyright law by placing the _______ on writers to seek out instances of _______. Industry analysts put the disagreement down to _______ copyright laws that are centuries old. Legal procedures to _______ with the breakneck speed of developments in electronic information cannot be _______ in time to safeguard intellectual copyright. A Google press release stated: “We’re going to continue talking about Google Print with our partners and the publishing industry. These discussions have been _______ in helping to build a program that _______ the industry and, most important, the millions of users who’ll be able to discover new books.”

 

 

enacted
infringement
benefits
outmoded
irked
cope
crucial
onus


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionaries / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘copy’ and ‘right’.

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the gap fill. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. STUDENT “BOOKS” SURVEY: In pairs / groups, write down questions about books, Google Print, libraries and copyright.

  • Ask other classmates your questions and note down their answers.
  • Go back to your original partner / group and compare your findings.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

6. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall exactly how these were used in the text:

  • freely
  • arms
  • akin
  • university
  • legitimately
  • suspended
  • irked
  • onus
  • breakneck
  • safeguard
  • partners
  • discover

DISCUSSION

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

  1. What were your initial thoughts on this headline?
  2. Did the headline make you want to read the article?
  3. What are your thoughts on Google Print?
  4. Do you think all books should be freely available online?
  5. Google says putting books online will increase book sales. What do you think?
  6. Google wants to put as much of the world’s information and knowledge on the Web. What do you think of this?
  7. If all books are online, libraries might disappear. Do you think this is good?
  8. Would you make regular use of Google Print?
  9. How often do you visit libraries?
  10. How often do you buy books?

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

  1. Did you like reading this article?
  2. What do you think about what you read?
  3. Do you think publishing companies will survive?
  4. Would you like to switch to downloadable E-books or do you prefer paper?
  5. Do you think authors would like their books available to the whole world on Google Print?
  6. Do you think copyright laws are fair?
  7. Have you ever broken copyright laws by photocopying books?
  8. Do you think Google will help increase world literacy?
  9. When was the last time you were up in arms over something?
  10. Did you like this discussion?

AFTER DISCUSSION: Join another partner / group and tell them what you talked about.

  1. What question would you like to ask about this topic?
  2. What was the most interesting thing you heard?
  3. Was there a question you didn’t like?
  4. Was there something you totally disagreed with?
  5. What did you like talking about?
  6. Do you want to know how anyone else answered the questions?
  7. Which was the most difficult question?

SPEAKING

ROLE PLAY: This role play is to discuss whether or not Google should scan millions of books and put them online. Team up with classmates who have been assigned the same role as you. Develop your roles and discuss ideas and “strategies” before the role play begins.

Introduce yourself to the other role players.

Role A – Google Print Boss

You think all of the words books should be available online. New writers will get their books exposed worldwide. World literacy rates will rise. World education will improve. Publishers will sell more paper books. The future is digital.

THINK OF MORE REASONS WHY GOOGLE PRINT IS GREAT.
 

Role B – Student

You are fed up with over-priced textbooks and reading books. The new Harry Potter book is ridiculously expensive. Google Print will mean you can read more books and get better grades and a better job. You can also get out-of-print books that publishers no longer make profits from.

THINK OF MORE REASONS WHY YOU LOVE GOOGLE PRINT.
 

Role C – Publisher

You want to take Google to court over copyright infringement. You think Google believes it is above the law and can do what it wants with the Internet. You are worried placing books on the Web will kill the publishing industry. Book companies are the life blood for new and established writers.

THINK OF MORE REASONS WHY GOOGLE PRINT IS BAD.
 

Role D – Writer

You think Google has just ended your career. You will not be able to make any money if your books are available for free on the Internet. You believe Google Print will deter any future writers from writing. Accuse Google Print of killing the future of world literature.

THINK OF MORE REASONS WHY WRITERS MUST BE PAID FOR THEIR BOOKS.
 

Change roles and repeat the role play. Comment in groups about the differences between the two role plays.

In pairs / groups, discuss whether you really believe in what you said while you were in your roles.

LISTENING

Listen and fill in the spaces.

Google delays book scanning

Google’s ______ aim of scanning millions of books, to be freely searchable on the Internet, has encountered a major ______. Publishers are up in arms over what they see as flagrant violations of copyright. They fear the ____________ of copyrighted books will seriously damage publishing, ______ __ how illegal downloading and pirating has _________ the music industry. Google Print involves scanning books from the university libraries of Harvard, Stanford, Michigan and Oxford. Google said it is using the books legitimately under the “____ ____” copyright law, which allows people to reproduce small amounts of copyrighted material for personal use. Google has _________ scanning the books until November and has asked publishers to say which copyrighted material cannot be used.

Publishers are ______ at what they perceive as Google’s attempt at __________ copyright law by placing the _____ on writers to seek out instances of infringement. Industry analysts put the disagreement down to _________ copyright laws that are centuries old. Legal procedures to cope with the ___________ speed of developments in electronic information cannot be enacted in time to ___________ intellectual copyright. A Google press release stated: “We’re going to continue talking about Google Print with our partners and the publishing industry. These discussions have been ________ in helping to build a program that benefits the industry and, most important, the millions of users who’ll be able to ________ new books.”

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find more information on Google Print. Share your findings with your class in the next lesson.

3. LETTER: Write a letter to the boss of Google Print. Tell him / her what you think of the idea of Google Print. Read your letters to your classmates in your next lesson. Did you all have similar thoughts?

4. DIARY / JOURNAL: Imagine you are a writer. Your books being put online by Google Print may damage your future income. Write your diary / journal entry about your worries. Read your entry to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all write about similar things?

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a. T

b. F

c. F

d. F

e. T

f. T

g. F

h. T

SYNONYM MATCH:

a.

heady

exciting

b.

hitch

stumbling block

c.

up in arms

furious

d.

afflicted

beset

e.

suspended

shelved

f.

upending

turning upside down

g.

breakneck

rapid

h.

onus

burden

i.

safeguard

protect

j.

crucial

vital

PHRASE MATCH:

a.

encountered a

major hitch

b.

Publishers are up

in arms

c.

flagrant

violations of copyright

d.

pirating has

afflicted the music industry

e.

reproduce small amounts of

copyrighted material

f.

placing the onus

on writers

g.

outmoded copyright laws

that are centuries old

h.

breakneck

speed

i.

safeguard

intellectual copyright

j.

millions of users who’ll be

able to discover new books

GAP FILL:

Google delays book scanning

Google’s heady aim of scanning millions of books, to be freely searchable on the Internet, has encountered a major hitch. Publishers are up in arms over what they see as flagrant violations of copyright. They fear the duplication of copyrighted books will seriously damage publishing, akin to how illegal downloading and pirating has afflicted the music industry. Google Print involves scanning books from the university libraries of Harvard, Stanford, Michigan and Oxford. Google said it is using the books legitimately under the “fair use” copyright law, which allows people to reproduce small amounts of copyrighted material for personal use. Google has suspended scanning the books until November and has asked publishers to say which copyrighted material cannot be used.

Publishers are irked at what they perceive as Google’s attempt at upending copyright law by placing the onus on writers to seek out instances of infringement. Industry analysts put the disagreement down to outmoded copyright laws that are centuries old. Legal procedures to cope with the breakneck speed of developments in electronic information cannot be enacted in time to safeguard intellectual copyright. A Google press release stated: “We’re going to continue talking about Google Print with our partners and the publishing industry. These discussions have been crucial in helping to build a program that benefits the industry and, most important, the millions of users who’ll be able to discover new books.” 

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