[FR] Google signs agreement on remuneration of neighbouring rights for publications containing "political and general information"

IRIS 2021-3:1/6

Amélie Blocman


In April 2020, the French competition authority ordered Google to negotiate licences with publishers "in good faith", allowing it to post publications or excerpts in accordance with the Act of 24 July 2019. This was confirmed by the Paris appeal court on 8 October 2020. On 21 January 2021, following the signature of an initial series of individual agreements between Google and various publishers (including Le Monde, L'Obs, Le Figaro, Libération and L’Express) in November, the Alliance de la presse d’information générale (French general press alliance – APIG) and the American giant announced an agreement on the remuneration of neighbouring rights under the Act of 24 July 2019. Several months of negotiations within the framework set out by the competition authority has culminated in an agreement which lays down the principles under which Google will negotiate individual licensing agreements with APIG members (which include national daily newspapers and regional daily and weekly publications) whose publications are recognised as containing political and general information, while reflecting the principles of the law, according to Google’s blog. These individual licensing agreements will cover neighbouring rights and will allow for participation in News Showcase, a new licensing programme for press publications recently launched by Google to provide readers with access to enriched content. The remuneration provided for in the licensing agreements between each publisher and Google is based on criteria such as the publisher’s contribution to political and general information, the daily volume of publications and its monthly Internet audience.

The Minister of Culture stressed that the agreement between Google and the APIG was only the first stage, with others to follow. Firstly, the agreement did not cover all rightsholders, even though neighbouring rights were owned by all press publishers (and not only those that published political and general information) and press agencies. Secondly, as Google was not the only company that should be paying for neighbouring rights, she called on the other platforms concerned to comply with French and European law. Finally, the minister announced that she would ensure that the remuneration received by publishers and press agencies for neighbouring rights was shared appropriately and fairly with journalists and other authors of works that were included in press publications, as the directive and the Act required. This is therefore not the end of the story...



  • L’Alliance de la Presse d’Information Générale et Google France signent un accord relatif à l’utilisation des publications de presse en ligne
  • The Alliance de la Presse d'Information Générale and Google France announce an agreement relating to the use of online press publications

This article has been published in IRIS Legal Observations of the European Audiovisual Observatory.