Friday, October 19, 2012

Retweet: French newspapers, too, want to be paid; Google tells them to beat it, the French up the ante

Below this post you'll find a post about efforts from the association representing newspapers in Brazil to try and get Google to pay them for access to their headlines. Google did not respond.

Ars Technica this afternoon posted a story about similar efforts on the part of the French. A proposed new law would require Google to share some of the revenue it generates through news search results.

Google, in this case, has responded to the French proposal. You can pretty imagine what their response would be.

According to France24, Google has threatened to stop linking to French media sites. In response the new French government has said Google should not "threaten democratic governments."

The French have shot back and said that such a move to remove French media links would require the government to ban Google from referencing French sites, in general.

And to think, the French have the bomb. Let's hope they don't plan on negotiating this way with other countries.

In any case, it's all sounds like a lot of bluster to me. Google has no intention of sharing revenue with newspapers, and the French government's balance sheet looks much weaker than Google's, so their leverage is not very great. Of course, the French could up the ante and start talking about nationalizing Google in France, but I wouldn't count on it. But if they do, pass the popcorn, this could be entertaining.