Google has agreed to pay French publishers for content it can use in free news previews. As reported by Engadget, this means that subscription sites will be able to display certain articles for free with Google.
Google has slowly been improving its news content and platform over recent months and years with slow incremental progress. Back in 2019, it began it expand its sports content with much more detailed football insights coming to the platform.
Following this Google began to at weather alerts to its already rather in-depth temperature cards. Another sign that the company was keen to invest in this platform.
This move to pay for subscription content for its new snippets and previews is just one more signal that Google aims to improve in this area.
This deal has come about following a difficult dispute it 2020 where regulators forced Google to start negotiations with publishers. At one point, this saw Google remove news previews all together but now it looks like they have come to an agreement.
Google set to pay French publishers for free news previews
Google has struck the deal with French publishers’ lobby, Alliance de la presse d'information générale (APIG). This deal appears to be only the framework with individual payments negotiated with specific publishers.
This specific deals with publishers will likely be based on information such as political or general information, the number of stories per day and the unique visitors per month.
The deal will also see French newspapers gain access to Google’s News Showcase. They will also have the ability to publish full or partial articles and experiment with bulleted or other formats. This could mean subscriptions sites may offer some content for free.
As mentioned this deal came about after new EU rules force negotiations. The rules basically forced digital companies to at least negotiate to display articles.
APIG president Pierre Louette made a statement on the deal. He said, "his agreement is an important step, marking the recognition of neighbouring rights of press publishers and the start of remuneration".
Google France’s managing director, Sébastien Missoffe also made a comment. He noted that the deal "opens up new perspectives for our partners, and we are happy to contribute to their development in the digital age and support journalism".
Google has traditionally been against paying publishers for content. They argue that Google helps publishers by bringing more eyes on their product. However, now the company has been forced by law to change its approach the tone has changed.
Individual deals with publishers are confidential so it is unclear how much publishers will gain. However, any remuneration from Gooogle will be seen as a win at this stage.