Hey Google, Where’s The AP Product?

    August 3, 2007
    WebProNews Staff

A license to link to Associated Press content last August still hasn’t yielded any further developments from Google. Some say this could indicate Google was shaken down for a payoff.

"The standover man is a loner, a predator who preys on other, more prosperous criminals, often extremely dangerous ones. He captures them and 'stands over' them. To extort money."
-- Arleigh explains Blackwell's old job to Laney, in Gibson's Idoru

The topic of the Google and AP deal disclosed a year ago featured a new product proposal, as a Google spokesperson disclosed last year:

“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.”

It’s been a year. InfoWorld and Techdirt expressed curiosity about this. Both AP and Google had nothing to add to the discussion.

The AP spokesperson’s comments presented some intrigue:

AP spokesman Jack Stokes declined to discuss details about the Google deal, citing the organization’s general policy on publicly discussing customer deals. “The agreements with commercial markets, such as the one signed with Google, protect our intellectual property and provide supplemental revenue to subsidize our newsgathering and other services for members,” he wrote via e-mail.

One will notice a distinct lack of mention of the word ‘product’ in AP’s denouement. Something could be in the works at Google; perhaps an AP newsreader similar to the New York Times Reader that Microsoft debuted last year.

Or one could infer the payoff to AP simply served as a business decision, to stave off another lengthy press related lawsuit, similar to the Copiepresse litigation that’s still on appeal.

We’ll keep our eyes open for a Google/AP product. Perhaps it will be a newsreader for mobile phones?