Marketing 2 min read

France Orders Google to pay French Publishers for Using Their Content

pixinoo / Shutterstock.com

pixinoo / Shutterstock.com

After losing a crucial case in France, Google must now pay French publishers and news websites for using their content on its results page.

The antitrust regulators in France have ordered Google to pay French publishers for using their content.

Currently, Google can take snippets, titles, and images from news websites without paying the publishers.

The tech giant argued that it was helping these publishers by sending traffic to their news organizations. Based on data from 32 press publications, search engines such as Google account for between 26 and 90 percent of traffic redirected on news websites.

However, France’s competition regulator discovered that it might not be entirely true. They found that Google’s actions are indeed harming the publishers.

In a statement, France’s ‘Autorite de la Concurrence’ said:

“Google’s practices caused serious and immediate harm to the press sector, while the economic situation of publishers and news agencies is otherwise fragile.”

The ruling also pointed out that the search engine giant did not comply with a 2019 requirement that entails negotiating a fair payment system with news organizations.

Instead, Google decided not to show French news altogether unless the publisher gave them for free. These include article extracts, photos, and videos.

Google to Negotiate in Good Faith With French Publishers

Now Google has three months to negotiate with press agencies and news publishers in France. According to the emergency order, the tech giant must figure out how to pay these bodies for reusing their content.

Also, the order requires that Google displays news snippets during the negotiation period, based on the publishers’ needs. Meanwhile, the new terms reached via the negotiation process will apply retrospectively.

Finally, the tech company has to submit a report in four weeks, detailing its progress. After that, it should also issue a follow-up report every month.

Vice president of News at Google, Richard Gingras said:

“We are in discussions with a large number of press publishers in order to increase our support and investments for the benefit of the press sector. We will comply with the decision of the Competition Authority, which we are in the process of analyzing while continuing these negotiations. “

Google’s business model of using content from news publishers in Google News may have come to an end in France. It remains to be seen whether similar measures will take effect worldwide in the future.

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Sumbo Bello

Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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