Google Fined 500 Mln Euros in News Copyright Row with French Antitrust Regulator

US tech giant Google has to pay 500 mln euros in fines over a news copyright row with the French antitrust regulator after it had failed to negotiate with media outlets over the republishing of their content, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Google had allegedly violated its April 2020 orders that it must negotiate with publishers for the right to show snippets of their content in its search results after complaints from publishers that it was sidestepping France’s implementation of a new European Union copyright directive.

French Competition Authority announced on Tuesday that Google now has a two-month deadline or it will have to pay up to 900,000 euros per day. According to its head, Isabelle de Silva, the fine, which is among the larger from the French regulator in recent years, takes into account the exceptional seriousness of the alleged violations.

Google France, who has reached paid deals with some French news publishers, such as Le Monde and Le Figaro, but not with others such as AFP, said that it is disappointed with the watchdog’s decision, claiming that the fine ignores its efforts to reach an agreement with news publishers.

France imposed the first antitrust fine against Google in December 2019, when it ordered the company to pay 150 million euros with several other fines following shortly after. The last one – in June- was in amount of 220 million euros “for promoting its services in the online advertising sector”.

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