February 4, 2013

Google sets up £52 million fund for French media


A resolution in the ongoing debate over whether Google should pay for their news results has occurred with the online behemoth setting up a multimillion euro fund for French publishers.

Resolving the long-standing dispute between French news outlets and Google  in this way meant that Google did not concede that it has to pay for the “snippets” of news in the search engine’s results.

Instead, according to the Associated Press, Google has set up a Digital Publishing Innovation Fund of £52 million to help publishers evolve to digital platforms.

“The commercial agreement will allow media organisations to profit from Google advertising platforms, including AdSense and AdMob for mobile phones. Google sends some 6bn clicks a month to publishers around the world, representing a big money-making potential by selling advertising next to it and drawing in new readers. Clicking on the ads generates revenue that will be shared. It was not immediately clear how the revenue will be split, but most was expected to go to the French publishers.”

Google’s Eric Schmidt and French President Francois Hollande announced the compromise on Friday, after a vigorous campaign by the French media, who demanded that the government step in.

It will be interesting to see how useful the fund will really be to the French publishers, although a similar model has very little chance of occurring here in the United States.



Ariel Bogle is a publicist at Melville House.