Google threatens to exclude the French online press from its search

By EDRi · October 24, 2012

This article is also available in:
Deutsch: [Google droht der französischen Online-Presse mit Ausschluss aus der Google-Suche |]

GESTE, a French group of online editors, has been trying for a few years
now to get part of Google’s revenues generated by its news service with
indexed titles.

“Google has developed on our content” said Corinne Denis, President of
GESTE who also stated for Édition Multimédi@: “We have been discussing
with them for years on this topic. And if they have kept their promise
to never sell advertising on Google News, by including the news on their
search engine, they have cleverly avoided the obstacle”.

Therefore GESTE supports a new draft law, so-called “lex Google”
(already presented in the last EDRi-gram), that may introduce a fee on
hypertext links. A “fair remuneration” would be introduced through a fee
applied on hypertext links. The draft law also introduces a three-year
prison and a 300 000 Euro fine for reproducing or making available “all
or part of” press contents, without authorisation.

Facing the perspective of a fee imposed on hyperlinks, Google threatens
with excluding the French online press from its searching index. The
company believes it has already done enough by bringing traffic to the
sites it references.

Google stated that what the draft law was meant for, was actually to
interdict unpaid referencing. “According to the draft text that has been
circulated since September, a new related right is to be created for a
5-year exclusive period, that would make mandatory the previous
authorisation of press bodies for ‘any reproduction, making available
for the public for sale, the exchange or communication to the public,
online included, of all or a part of the press contents edited under
their responsibility’.”

Last year, Google already excluded several Belgium newspapers from its
index following a court decision taken a few months before. The
situation was however resolved after a off-court settlement between the
parties involved.

Google threatens to ban the French press from its searching engine (only
in French, 18.10.2012)

À lire sur Numerama : Google menace de bannir la presse française de son moteur de recherche

For GESTE, Google is not a milk cow but it still has to pay (only in
French, 13.10.2012)

À lire sur Numerama : Pour le GESTE, Google n’est pas une vache à lait mais doit payer quand même

The facts about our position on |French copyright proposals (18.10.2012)

The damaging effects of a draft law meant to interdict unpaid references
of press articles in France (only in French, 10.1012)

EDRi-gram: Ancillary copyright madness in Germany and France (26.09.2012)