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Governments joining forces against big IT

Canadian government has discussed with Germany, France, Finland and Australia about working together on ensuring fair compensation when big IT companies are using publishers´ content online, Canadian Heritage Minister, Steven Guilbeault, told media.

He said Canada could join Australia introducing legislation forcing big IT companies to pay for using publishers´ content online with an independent panel setting the price if the parties can´t agree. An alternative is the French legislation forcing parties to negotiate payment, he said.

The French legislation is based on the European Union´s updated copyright directive. In France, the negotiations have so far led to Google agreeing with an alliance of publishers to pay for their contributions to the Google News Showcase service in the same way as Google has agreed to pay publishers in Australia.

French publishers not covered by the Google agreement have protested saying they also want to be covered by the payment agreement.

“We are working to see which model would be the most appropriate,” Guilbeault told reporters. He informed that he has spoken to his colleagues in France, Germany, Finland and Australia about working together on ensuring fair compensation for web content.

He said that it could soon be five, ten, fifteen countries adopting similar rules and he questioned if Facebook wil cut times also with them.

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