Google Faces Another Complaint From German Publishers

Chris CrumBusiness, ENTBusinessNews

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Google is still battling German publishers over including their content among Google News links as it faces a new legal complaint related to a war that just won't end.

Will this end up with Google shutting Google News down in Germany? Time will tell.

VG Media, a consortium of German news publishers, has reportedly filed a new complaint against the company for what common sense dictates is free traffic to their websites (go ahead and try to make sense of it). Reuters reports:

They justified the step by saying that Google still did not want to pay to use their publications: "So bringing a civil claim before the responsible court is the only way to enforce the ancillary copyright for press publishers against Google," the VG Media spokesman said.

VG Media represents about 200 publishers.

Once upon a time, the consortium pushed for an ancillary copyright law to force Google to pay for using snippets of content, but Google got around it. Eventually, Google just stopped showing snippers for the publishers in question, and then VG Media turned around and said they could again use snippets because they were "being forced to take this step because of the 'overwhelming market power of Google.'"

It was a head scratcher then, and it sill is.

Google faced a similar situation in Spain and ultimately just shut down Google News. According to a study that came out last summer, the effects of that were damaging to the industry.

Will the same thing happen in Germany? We'll just have to see how the story plays out. So far, Google is keeping quiet.

Image via Google

Chris Crum
Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.