Google signs deal with French media for use of content in search

Google said Thursday it had signed “individual agreements” on payment of copyright with French newspapers and magazines after months of wrangling over the sharing of revenue from posting news in search results.

Signatories to the agreement included the main French dailies Le Monde, Le Figaro and Liberation, as well as magazines such as L’Express, L’Obs and Courrier International.

In a statement, Google France director Sébastien Missoffe said discussions with other media groups were continuing, with the aim of reaching “a framework agreement by the end of the year.”

The announcement came after a Paris appeals court ruled last month that the US giant must continue to negotiate with French press editors over a new EU law on so-called “neighboring rights” that requires a payment for the dissemination of topical content with Internet searches.

Ailing news outlets have long been in turmoil over Google’s inability to give them a share of the millions it earns from ads displayed with news search results.

But Google had refused to comply with digital copyright law, saying media groups were already profiting by receiving millions of visits to their websites.

Financial details were not disclosed, but Missoffe said Google said payments would be based on criteria such as daily post volumes, monthly internet traffic and “publisher’s contribution to political news and general “.

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