Google frenches Gallic media with €60m and some 'help'

Have some cash and forget all about that nasty link tax


Eric Schmidt, chairman of Google has dropped a little sweetener to the French media as Google's legal tussle over "a link tax" rumbles on.

Schmidt announced a 60m euro fund for "innovation" in French journalism and "help" for French publishers using Google's advertising tools, in a joint announcement with the French President Francois Hollande on Friday. Schmidt blogged:

First, Google has agreed to create a €60 million Digital Publishing Innovation Fund to help support transformative digital publishing initiatives for French readers.

Second, Google will deepen our partnership with French publishers to help increase their online revenues using our advertising technology.

Google faced pressure from the French government to pay a link tax for excerpting and linking to articles by French newspapers on search results pages, pages on which Google take all the ad revenue. Google have flatly resisted any suggestions of a link tax but looks like they've decided to charm rather than fight their way out of the impasse by scattering some money around.

The new plan will funnel a little Google cash towards troubled French media outlets without Google having to concede the principle of a link tax, a precedent that would be disastrous for the ad giant's business model.

The deal seems to have pacified France's government - Fleur Pellerin, France's Minister for Small and Medium Enterprise and the Digital Economy, tweeted that she was happy with the historic agreement which was a good example of constructive integration.

Pellerin said that the 60 million euros would finance modernisation projects and digital transition for the French media organisations.

Google faces pressure on the same issue from the German government.

Google faces several legislative challenges in France. Disputes recently have included whether sites that create a lot of traffic should subsidise network infrastructure, and whether web companies should be charged when they take user information - as a means to claw back tax revenue from the American companies. ®

Similar topics

Broader topics


Other stories you might like

  • AMD claims its GPUs beat Nvidia on performance per dollar
    * Terms, conditions, hardware specs and software may vary – a lot

    As a slowdown in PC sales brings down prices for graphics cards, AMD is hoping to win over the market's remaining buyers with a bold, new claim that its latest Radeon cards provide better performance for the dollar than Nvidia's most recent GeForce cards.

    In an image tweeted Monday by AMD's top gaming executive, the chip designer claims its lineup of Radeon RX 6000 cards provide better performance per dollar than competing ones from Nvidia, with all but two of the ten cards listed offering advantages in the double-digit percentages. AMD also claims to provide better performance for the power required by each card in all but two of the cards.

    Continue reading
  • Google opens the pod doors on Bay View campus
    A futuristic design won't make people want to come back – just ask Apple

    After nearly a decade of planning and five years of construction, Google is cutting the ribbon on its Bay View campus, the first that Google itself designed.

    The Bay View campus in Mountain View – slated to open this week – consists of two office buildings (one of which, Charleston East, is still under construction), 20 acres of open space, a 1,000-person event center and 240 short-term accommodations for Google employees. The search giant said the buildings at Bay View total 1.1 million square feet. For reference, that's less than half the size of Apple's spaceship. 

    The roofs on the two main buildings, which look like pavilions roofed in sails, were designed that way for a purpose: They're a network of 90,000 scale-like solar panels nicknamed "dragonscales" for their layout and shimmer. By scaling the tiles, Google said the design minimises damage from wind, rain and snow, and the sloped pavilion-like roof improves solar capture by adding additional curves in the roof. 

    Continue reading
  • Pentester pops open Tesla Model 3 using low-cost Bluetooth module
    Anything that uses proximity-based BLE is vulnerable, claim researchers

    Tesla Model 3 and Y owners, beware: the passive entry feature on your vehicle could potentially be hoodwinked by a relay attack, leading to the theft of the flash motor.

    Discovered and demonstrated by researchers at NCC Group, the technique involves relaying the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) signals from a smartphone that has been paired with a Tesla back to the vehicle. Far from simply unlocking the door, this hack lets a miscreant start the car and drive away, too.

    Essentially, what happens is this: the paired smartphone should be physically close by the Tesla to unlock it. NCC's technique involves one gadget near the paired phone, and another gadget near the car. The phone-side gadget relays signals from the phone to the car-side gadget, which forwards them to the vehicle to unlock and start it. This shouldn't normally happen because the phone and car are so far apart. The car has a defense mechanism – based on measuring transmission latency to detect that a paired device is too far away – that ideally prevents relayed signals from working, though this can be defeated by simply cutting the latency of the relay process.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022