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Audible agrees to delay parts of disputed captions program

August 30, 2019

NEW YORK (AP) — Faced with legal action from several of the country’s biggest publishers, Audible is delaying parts of an audiobook captions program the plaintiffs say violates copyright law.

In papers files this week in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, Audible agreed not to “enable” the captions feature for books owned or licensed by the publishers until a judge had ruled on their call for a preliminary injunction. Penguin Random House and Simon & Schuster are among seven publishers who on Aug. 23 sued Audible, alleging that its plan to provide captions for select audiobooks required their permission. “Audible Captions” is expected to launch next month.

Audible, owned by Amazon.com, is the dominant producer and distributor of audiobooks.

A hearing is scheduled for Sept. 25.

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