Google must open talks with French publishers about paying for content, court rules

A French court has ordered Google to begin talks with publishers in the country about paying to use their content, a move that could have ripple effects across Europe.

The search giant will now need to discuss remuneration with publishers and news agencies under the EU’s “neighboring right,” which allows publishers to take a fee from online platforms that show snippets of their work.

The ruling confirmed an April decision by France’s competition authority, which ordered Google to negotiate payment with newsmakers “for any re-use of protected content,” and arrives on the heels of the Mountain View, Calif. company’s announcement that it will pay publishers $1 billion for content over the next three years.

The difference between Thursday’s order and last week’s announcement, which will see publishers submit curated content to the newly created Google News Showcase to be presented on the Google News app and websites, is that the arrangement will involve finding a sustainable methodology for Google to pay content makers.

The French court’s ruling comes hours after Google said it was set to reach with a deal to pay French publishers for their news in the latest move to placate media groups and head off regulators siding with publishers seeking a level playing field.

“Our priority remains to reach an agreement with the French publishers and press agencies,” Google said in a statement.

“We appealed to get legal clarity on some parts of the order, and we will now review the decision of the Paris court of appeal.”

With Post wires. 

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