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Süddeutsche Zeitung - Germany | Monday, February 4, 2013

Intellectual property rights: Google buys freedom

Google and French publishers reached an agreement in the row over intellectual property rights on Friday: the Internet company will set up a 60 million euro fund for digital media projects and in return won't have to pay for content displayed in its search results. A cheap and convenient solution for Google, the left-liberal daily Süddeutsche Zeitung criticizes:  "This settlement allows company to buy its way out of this fundamental issue - for 60 million euros. ... That's not a lot. Digital projects are supposed to benefit from the Google money. It sounds good, but from the publishers' view the price is very high. They leave the Internet firm in peace and free Google from the obligation of worrying about the principle of intellectual property in future. This is pragmatic - but still wrong. Germany's publishers are rightly rejecting the deal. But at least we know now that if the pressure is great enough, Google will negotiate in Europe. German companies can now build on this. They just have to do it better in the end, regardless of whether or not it appears noble."

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