European press agencies push for licensing fees for their content from Google, Facebook

Google has faced off several times against European news publishers and governments in Germany and Spain, seeking to get the company to pay copyright fees for the indexing of news content. Google has largely prevailed in these instances. However, that hasn’t deterred publishers from continuing to make the case that the US internet giants should pay for their content.
A new consortium of nine European press agencies is now arguing that Google and Facebook make money from news content and pay little or nothing for it. They also assert that news organizations — “a pillar of democracy” — are financially vulnerable, while Facebook’s and Google’s profits are soaring.
Google (and presumably Facebook) take the position that inclusion and exposure of publisher content drive online traffic and therefore is a benefit rather than a detriment. Indeed, when German publishers had their snippets and thumbnails removed from Google in the wake of a dispute over a 2013 “Ancillary Copyright” Law, they

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