Google and France signed an agreement Friday resolving a dispute with
French news websites that sees the US Internet search giant setting up a
60 million euro fund to help old media adapt to the digital age.
is proud to have reached this agreement with Google, the first of its
kind in the world," the French president's office said on Twitter after
Francois Hollande and Google chief Eric Schmidt signed the accord.
will set up a 60 million euro ($82 mn) fund to help French media
develop online projects, the French president's office said.
The president's office said the fund "will help the news press transition to the digital world."
said on his Google blog "A healthy news industry is important for
Google and our partners, and it is essential to a free society."
deal follows two months of mediation with French news websites, who
were unhappy they were getting none of the advertising revenue Google
earned from sending search clients to their news content.
websites had wanted Google to share revenue earned from linking to
their content, but the California-based search engine had said the
practice would "threaten (Google's) very existence".
news websites won't tap into Google's advertising revenue stream, the
second part of the agreement will see the US company help them generate
Schmidt said "Google will deepen our partnership with
French publishers to help increase their online revenues using our
If no settlement had been reached the
French government had threatened to introduce legislation, while Google
warned it could retaliate by no longer indexing content from French news