Reuters: Facebook signs preliminary copyright agreement with French press

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Facebook has signed a preliminary copyright agreement with a French lobby group of news publishers. That writes Reuters. According to the news agency, the company is thus paving the way for paying for news content on its platforms.

After months of negotiations with a French lobby group that defends the interests of, among others, Le Monde, Le Figaro and Les Echos, the preliminary agreement contains the terms and conditions and amounts for copyright fees, according to Reuters. These will later be molded into a legal framework in which any member of the French media industry association Alliance de la Presse d’Information Générale, or APIG, could maneuver. They can continue to negotiate with Facebook on an individual basis.

According to Reuters, there will be two types of licenses. The first refers to news items that are distributed on Facebook’s platforms. The other license includes terms for news articles published on Facebook News, Facebook’s news platform currently available in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany and Australia. In 2022, Facebook News would also be available in France.

Not only Facebook is forced in France to conclude a copyright agreement with the French media sector. Google reached a similar agreement with the APIG early this year. It was agreed that the American search giant would pay license agreements for linked news publications and snippits, including from the Google News Showcase. Last summer, Google was fined 500 million euros by the French competition watchdog Autorité de la concurrence. It states that the search giant pushed for a new global partnership during negotiations: Publisher Curated News and its Showcase service. According to the watchdog, Google refused to discuss certain fees and limited the negotiations by excluding certain news agencies and publishers. According to the French watchdog, the company would have abused its dominant position.

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