Google fined 500 million euros by France over Copyright issues

Google was handed a 500 million euro ($593 million) fine by France’s antitrust watchdog on Tuesday for failing to comply with the regulator’s orders about how to hold talks with the country’s news publishers in a tussle over copyright.

The fine is another example of the mounting international pressure that online platforms such as Google and Facebook have endured as they are pushed to share a larger chunk of their revenue with news outlets.

Google is now compelled to draw up proposals within the following two months on how it would compensate news agencies and other publishers for using the news that they produce. A failure to so will result in additional fines amounting to 900,000 euros per day.

Meanwhile, Google expressed its disappointment over the decision but stated that it will comply with the ruling.

“Our objective remains the same: we want to turn the page with a definitive agreement. We will consider the French Competition Authority’s feedback and adapt our offers,” the U.S. tech giant said.

A Google spokesperson added: “We have acted in good faith throughout the entire process. The fine ignore our efforts to reach an agreement, and the reality of how news works on our platforms.”

News publishers such as APIG, SEPM, and AFP have laid accusations upon the tech company for failing to conduct talks in good faith and working towards reaching a common ground for the remuneration of news content curated by agencies and also published by Google online, under a recent European Union directive that creates so-called “neighbouring rights”.