A New York judge rejected a class-action settlement this week between Google Inc. and book publishers that would have given the search company the keys to the world’s largest online library. U.S. District Court Judge Denny Chin, for the Southern District of New York, said the settlement went “too far” and would “grant Google significant rights to exploit entire books, without permission of the copyright owners.” In 2005, Google was taken to court under allegations that its Google Books online library infringed copyright as the company scanned books from major American research libraries without permission. In October 2008, a settlement was reached under which Google would pay $125 million US to clear copyrights and establish a Digital Rights Registry to identify and compensate copyright owners whose books are distributed online. The settlement would have given Google exclusive control over millions of digitized books. Critical international reaction to the proposed agreement resulted in changes some changes to it. But in a decision issued Tuesday, Judge Chin rejected the proposed settlement agreement, saying it would hand Google "a significant advantage over competitors.” “This is clearly disappointing, but we’ll review the Court’s decision and consider our options,” Google counsel Hilary Ware said in a statement this week. “Like many others, we believe this agreement has the potential to open-up access to millions of books that are currently hard to find in the US today. Regardless of the outcome, we’ll continue to work to make more of the world’s books discoverable online through Google Books and Google eBooks.” During the court proceeding, a number of Canadian lobby groups filed objections to the agreement, arguing that it violated international law such as NAFTA and the Berne Convention on copyright.