Google's Schmidt in Paris to resolve tense situation with French press
The executive chairman of Google, Eric Schmidt, is expected to meet with French President François Hollande and the French minister of Culture on Monday in Paris.
The American search engine is in a major showdown with French publishers over proposals made by the French government to make search engines pay a charge for each link to French papers.
Schmidt is expected to first meet with the minister of Communications and Culture, Aurélie Filippetti, who sides more with the demands by European publishers, according to a source close to the case.
He will then meet with Hollande at the Elysée.
Editors from French, German, and Italian papers are also demanding that search engines give them “neigbhourly rights”; a sort of prolonging of copyrights on the off-chance articles are used indirectly. This proposal would be legalised.
In retaliation, Google has threatened to no longer reference French media and to no longer redirect people to those sites, if such a tax system is in fact legislated.
According to the left-leaning French newspaper, Libération, the government will try to pressure Google to find an agreement with publishers in the next three months.
Newspapers, in addition to the music industry and cinema, have long been resentful of search engines, whereby the likes of Google is able to make a profit from simply referring a title or a piece of work.