The Google-AP deal
Google and the Associated Press (“AP”) have worked out a new licensing deal allowing Google to continue displaying AP content in its news section. Disagreements between the two companies began in 2006 when AP threatened to sue Google for its display of AP content. At some point last year, while Google and AP were ironing out discrepancies, Google stopped linking to AP ads. I did a little search and found AP content on Google news. Sites like Google, which link news content to original sources without necessarily acquiring permission to do so, are doing very well, while the companies that produce the news stories, not so well.
Even though Google News credits the original source of each piece of news it posts on its website, there are still negative consequences for AP and other news agencies. Instead of paying for a subscription for those Newspapers, consumers can simply visit Google News, for free, perhaps contributing to the demise of newspapers in many cities. It seems fair to me therefore, for Google to compensate AP each time it shows AP content online.
Regardless of the settlement between these two entities, I’d like to pose the question out there for the readers of whether they think Google News displays of AP headlines, thumbnail images, and stories infringe AP’s copyrights on the photos and stories. In other words, does Google’s use of this information constitute “Fair Use”?