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French Newspapers Sue Twitter In Licensing Fee Battle

 |  July 12, 2023

Amid escalating tensions between French newspapers and Twitter, the popular microblogging platform is now facing a potential million-euro fine over its refusal to negotiate licensing fees with publishers.

Three of France’s biggest newspaper groups have asked judges in Paris to summon representatives from Twitter and its French subsidiary, demanding fair remuneration for the reproduction of their content in digital form. This includes a form of copyright protection known as ‘neighboring rights’ which provides news publishers with the right to monetize their publications.

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Intellectual property lawyer Vanessa Bouchara weighed-in on the situation, arguing: “They must have identified news articles being used, and what they want to find out is how much and to what extent they’ve been used so that they can establish the amount of remuneration that Twitter would owe them if it were to respect neighboring rights.”

Twitter has consistently refused to recognize French publishers’ claim for compensation, however, it now looks increasingly likely that the platform will have to pay the price for its inaction in the near future. This ruling could have major implications not just for Twitter, but for other digital companies which use content from newspapers without proper licensing.