Google Appeals Belgian Copyright Ruling

Google Incorporated has scheduled an appeal for July 17 in its copyright dispute with Belgian newspaper publishers, although the two sides expect to request an extension while they try to resolve the conflict amicably. Copiepresse, the publishing group representing Le Soir, Le Libre Belgique and other Belgian newspapers, sued Google last August for copyright infringement, arguing that it profits unfairly by posting snippets of its members' news stories on Google's Web sites without paying for their use.

The Court of First Instance in Brussels sided with Copiepresse in September, ordering Google to remove the Belgian Web sites from Google News and its main search engines, which it did. The court reaffirmed its decision in February. The two sides reached an initial agreement in May that allowed Google to begin linking to the newspapers from its main search engine again, although it still cannot list them in Google News. Google maintains that linking to the content is legal and provides a useful service for the general public and the newspapers, because it drives traffic to their sites. Copiepresse has said it wants to be included in Google News but that it should be compensated.

News source: PC World

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