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Blog Stefan Niggemeier - Germany | Friday, August 31, 2012

Publishing houses act like Google victims

The German cabinet decided on Wednesday in favour of a bill on ancillary copyrights allowing publishers the right to demand money for their contents from Google and other search engines. But the publishing companies arguments are built on sand, the journalist Stefan Niggemeier comments on his blog: "A search engine performs a service: it brings readers to contents that interest them. This is a double service, both for the user and for the content provider. ... But just ask yourself, who should be giving money to whom? And who depends more on the services provided by the other? ... The emotional argument runs: Google's got the cash. The company makes fantastillions of euros in profits, so it's not going to hurt it to pass on a bit of that to media companies that barely manage to keep their heads above water. ... This emotional argument is so effective because Google not only earns a ridiculous amount of money, it also sits on the other end of the world, a huge business with far too much influence that doesn't really do anything useful (apart from opening up the Internet to us and thus giving the impression of being indispensable.)"

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