Google Reaches A Deal With French Publishers Over Link Tax
Reuters reports Google has reached a deal worth €60 million with French publishers, following disputes over linking to their content.
French publishers have been pushing for Google to pay a “link tax” for linking to their content for some time and the French president threatened to force Google’s hand with legislation if a deal wasn’t reached soon, firing a warning shot two weeks ago with the results of a study suggesting a tax on companies that collect data on people, something Google does extensively. Paid Content reported that Google tried to settle the matter before Christmas with a proposed €50 million annual payment to publishers, similar to a deal reached with Belgian publishers, but the publishers wanted better terms. The deal hinged on a third of the payment being used for ad purchases.
The new deal skirts the contentious issue of a direct copyright payout, an open invitation for other publishers to seek link taxes, by offering a €60 million Digital Publishing Innovation Fund that Google will use to “support transformative French digital publishing initiatives.”