France’s competition authority on Thursday said that Google would have to pay up to French publishing companies and news agencies for posting their content.
The Autorité de la concurrence, the competition regulator in France, has granted requests for urgent interim measures presented by press publishers and the news agency AFP (Agence France Presse). It requires Google to negotiate with publishers and news agencies the remuneration due to them under the law relating to neighbouring rights for the re-use of their content.
Following a complaint lodged in November 2019 by several unions representing press publishers (Syndicat des éditeurs de la presse magazine, l’Alliance de la presse d’information générale) and Agence France-Presse (AFP) of practices implemented by Google on the occasion of the entry into force of the law of 24 July 2019 on neighbouring rights, the Autorité de la concurrence today ordered interim measures in the context of the urgent interim measures procedure. The Autorité found that "Google’s practices on the occasion of the entry into force of the neighbouring rights law were likely to constitute an abuse of a dominant position, and caused serious and immediate harm to the press sector."
It requires Google, within three months, "to conduct negotiations in good faith with publishers and news agencies on the remuneration for the re-use of their protected content." This negotiation must retroactively covers the fees due as of the entry into force of the law on 24 October 2019.