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French regulator fines Google $271M over generative AI copyright issue

๐ŸŒˆ Abstract

The article discusses the fine imposed by the French competition authority on Google, Alphabet, and its subsidiaries for breaching a previous agreement on using copyrighted content to train its Bard AI service, now known as Gemini.

๐Ÿ™‹ Q&A

[01] Google's Breach of Agreement

1. What were the key terms of the agreement that Google failed to comply with?

  • Google agreed to provide news agencies and publishers with a "transparent assessment" of their remuneration for usage rights, and to ensure the negotiations didn't impact other economic relations between Google and the publishers.
  • However, Google failed to:
    • Provide timely information necessary for monitoring the agreement
    • Provide full details about how it makes money from news content
    • Inform editors and press agencies about the use of their content to train the Bard AI service (now called Gemini)

2. What was the consequence of Google's failure to provide an opt-out tool for publishers? Until Google launched the Google Extended tool in September 2023, the only option for publishers was to block all Google services from crawling their sites, including those indexing for search, Discover, and News services.

[02] Fines and Responses

1. What were the fines imposed on Google and its subsidiaries? The French competition authority fined Google, Alphabet, and its subsidiaries a total of โ‚ฌ250 million ($271 million) for breaching the previous agreement.

2. How did Google respond to the fine? Google stated that it found the fine "disproportionate," but said it would pay up rather than contest it, stating "it is time to turn the page."

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