European press publishers welcome the Decision of the French Competition Authority (Autorite de la Concurence) obliging Google to negotiate with press publishers for the use of press content
Today the French Competition Authority issued a preliminary ruling against Google concerning its behaviour following the introduction of the EU neighbouring right for press publishers in France. In this historical decision, the French Competition Authority instructs Google to commence negotiations “in good faith” with press publishers’ and news agencies through emergency injunctions to be implemented immediately as interim measures.
The Competition Authority deems that Google’s practices at the time of the implementation of the Copyright Directive in France are susceptible to constitute an exploitative case of abuse of dominant position. Furthermore, the Competition Authority considers that Google’s practices could represent a serious and immediate prejudice to the press sector.
European publishers wholeheartedly welcome the French Competition Authority’s decision to urge Google to conduct bone fide negotiations with press publishers and news agencies for the use of press content by Google’s services in the next three months.
The European press needs a swift implementation of the Copyright Directive in all Member States. Today’s decision of the French Competition Authority provides a necessary precedent also for a European-wide discussion on Google’s misuse of its market power in the field of neighbouring rights.
Carlo Perrone, President of ENPA said: «European press publishers have been united during the negotiation of the Copyright Directive and remain united during its implementation. Today’s decision marks a historical first step, where France understands the need to protect the press in front of Google’s behaviour which clearly stems from an abuse of dominant position. We are nowadays experiencing how important is the difference between fake news and professional journalism, newspapers produce real information and Google has to share the profit».
Xavier Bouckaert, President of EMMA said: «Today’s decision is not only important for the French publishers, but it represents a historical opportunity for press publishers’ across the EU and a clear message of support for the press sector as the cornerstone of democracy ».
The European Magazine Media Association, is the unique and complete representation of Europe’s magazine media, which is today enjoyed by millions of consumers on various platforms, encompassing both paper and digital formats. EMMA represents 15,000 publishing houses, publishing 50,000 magazine titles across Europe in print and digital.www.magazinemedia.eu
The European Newspaper Publishers’ Association (ENPA) is the largest representative body of newspaper publishers across Europe. ENPA advocates for 16 national associations across 13 European countries, and is a principal interlocutor to the EU institutions and a key driver of media policy debates in the European Union.www.enpa.eu