One Year After Google's AP Deal… And Nothing To Show For It (Other Than A Lack Of Lawsuits)

from the makes-you-wonder dept

We were just talking about how confused news organizations are with the fact that Google News gives them free traffic, but it’s time to revisit one of the earlier disputes on this topic. In 2005 the Associated Press contacted Google to express their concern over Google News linking to AP content. This, of course, is ridiculous. There is absolutely nothing illegal about linking to content (or including a brief snippet of that content). However, with the AP making a lot of noise about this, last August Google signed a deal with AP, paying them an unknown amount of money to license AP content. This seemed strange — and, in fact, Google insisted that the deal had absolutely nothing (nothing!) to do with the links to AP content on Google News. Rather, Google insisted, the deal was about some new product that would make use of licensed AP content. Well, some have noticed that an entire year has gone by and no such product has been revealed. It’s looking more and more like Google simply paid the Associated Press off to prevent a lawsuit (and, possibly, to put pressure on Google News competitors to pay off news organizations as well). Perhaps Google really is working on a new product that will use AP content — but in the meantime, it looks like it paid the AP for a year’s worth of content it didn’t need to pay for.

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Companies: associated press, google

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Comments on “One Year After Google's AP Deal… And Nothing To Show For It (Other Than A Lack Of Lawsuits)”

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4 Comments
ehrichweiss says:

linking to SOME content is apparently illegal

I don’t know about in this case but in the MPAA vs 2600, links to sites were determined to be illegal, and these weren’t links to the *actual content*, just the sites that had them.

IP sucks….there are good reasons to have it and yet there are good reasons to get rid of it all.

Rover says:

We already covered that in another thread, but I wanted to reiterate my point. Yes, there’s nothing illegal, immoral, or even questionable about linking in the context of search engines. However, Google News is not a search engine. If it were, you’d see a blank page, a TEXT BOX for searching and nothing else.

Google News greets you with dozens of stories and photographs and provides more ways to get others without actually searching. Or clicking, for that matter. It’s NOT a search engine and therefore the protections of search engines (whereby a small segment is given only as a sample of what’s inside, and you’re supposed to click to get to the page) DO NOT APPLY here.

Call the discussions between Google and content providers whatever you want, but please stop writing content owners off as idiots and calling them “ridiculous”.

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