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Monday, July 31, 2006

Google Paying News Sites?

Huh?! Mercury News reports that “Google and Yahoo ... have been quietly agreeing to deals that compensate some of the country’s top news organizations for their content and help drive more traffic to their Web sites” and that “a major shift” might be ahead in the relationship between old media and “new Internet gatekeepers.”

According to the report, news outlets such as AP are compensated on a per-click basis. They quote Google CEO Eric Schmidt: “The people who own the content did a lot of work to generate the content ... We want them to get the majority of the revenue from advertising.” The article implies this is about Google News, though it doesn’t make that explicit (and indeed, Google News doesn’t even show ads to begin with).

The Mercury News article also mentions the Agence France-Presse case, saying that Google has denied violating their copyright, adding “Not every content provider who is demanding payment is receiving it.”

I believe it when I see it (or see it confirmed)...

[Thanks Alek.]

Update: Google gives this statement...

Google has always believed that content providers and publishers should be fairly compensated for their work so they can continue producing high quality information. We are always working on new ways to help users find the information they are looking for, and our business agreement with the Associated Press is one example of that.

(I’ve asked for further clarification... I still don’t know what’s going on.)


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