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Google/AP Deal To Spawn New Product

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For many publishers and news providers, being included in the Google News index is a good thing. It’s a traffic driver. For the Associated Press, it’s another matter because AP content is syndicated in publications worldwide. Google has agreed to a licensing agreement with the not-for-profit organization to avoid further legal entanglements.

Google/AP Deal Will Spawn New Product
Expect Some New Google Products Soon

Google and the AP disclosed yesterday that the search company would provide compensation for articles and photographs. But according to company spokespersons, the arrangement is not necessarily meant for Google News in its current incarnation.

“The license in this agreement provides for new uses of original AP content for features and products we will introduce in the future,” said Google spokesperson Sonya Boralv in a statement. “We are very excited about the innovative new products we will build with full access to this content.”

The future, says AP Business writer Michael Liedtke, is “in the coming months.” Google has been at the center of several riffs over the limitations of Fair Use, the guiding principles on use of content snippets and thumbnail images. Google has maintained that indexing and directing consumers to content is covered under those principles.

The Agence France Presse, Perfect 10 Magazine, and numerous publishers have disagreed. Google has been able to sidestep a few of these concerns in court, but is still facing legal action from the AFP, the Authors’ Guild, and the Association of American Publishers, among an international collection of others.

Aside from Google’s (and often the court’s) belief that indexing content is acceptable, the company has been brokering deals with publishers for other services, like AdSense and the Google Print for Publishers project.

“Google has always believed that content providers and publishers should be fairly compensated for their work so they can continue producing high quality information,” continued Boralv. “We are always working on new ways to help users find the information they are looking for, and our business agreement with the Associated Press is one example of that.”

Google would not elaborate on the financial details on the arrangement, nor would the company comment as to whether there are other syndication deals on the horizon.

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