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Google fined $592 million in dispute with French publishers, could face $1M per day in addition

Google-Antitrust Lawsuit
Posted at 10:14 AM, Jul 13, 2021

PARIS — France’s competition regulator has fined Google $592 million for failing to negotiate in good faith with French publishers in a dispute over payments for their news.

The agency threatened daily fines of around $1 million if Google doesn’t come up with proposals within two months on how it will compensate publishers and news agencies for their content.

Google said it was disappointed and on the verge of reaching an agreement with the publishers, saying the fine "ignores the significant efforts" the company has taken.

“We want to find a solution and reach definitive agreements but this fine is out of all proportion to the amount of money we make from news and we will be reviewing the decision in detail,” Google said in a statement.

The dispute with French publishers is part of a larger effort by the European Union to force Google and other tech companies to compensate publishers for content.

It stems from a 2019 ruling that decided Google had to enter into contracts with publishers in order to comply with the EU's copyright directive.