Google, AP Strike Content Deal for Google News

Google Aug. 30 struck a new content distribution deal with the Associated Press to host the publisher's content. Google is paying AP for the content and sharing search data.

Google has struck a new content distribution deal with the Associated Press to host the publisher's content on Google News and other properties, the search engine confirmed.

Google and the AP declined to reveal financial terms of the new deal, but the Wall Street Journal reported (paywall) Google is paying the news organization in the seven-figure range annually for the two-year deal.

Under the terms of the agreement, Google will host content from such publishers as the AP, Agence France-Presse, UK Press Association and the Canadian Press for readers to find and access on Google News.

Google will also share search data with the AP to help the publisher hone its revenue opportunities online.

The agreement resolves sometimes acrimonious negotiations over how Google uses the AP's content. Google News offers links that send readers to newspapers' Websites, but the AP has no such content portal for consumers, instead licensing its content to other Websites.

Google News had no way of indexing the publishers' stories from the original sources. The search engine indexed and rendered links to AP stories from Websites licensing the AP content, such as the Washington Post, Kansas City Star and ABC News.

The AP claimed Google was hurting its business by surfacing content from Websites who repurpose the AP's content. The AP threatened to pull its content from Google to protest what it perceived as a gross misappropriation.

With a new deal yet to be hashed out, Google stopped adding fresh AP content. The AP agreed to let Google retain older AP content on Google News in February.

During negotiations, the AP demanded more control in how Google renders its content online on the Google News aggregation Website.

Google has been loath to let publishers influence its search results because it would open the floodgates to future demands for such manipulation.

As an olive branch to ensure fair use of the AP's content, Google is also employing "duplicate detection" to display fresher content.

For example, instead of 20 "different" article links that used the same content, Google will surface the original copy and give credit to the original journalist.

Today's renewal also leaves room for the search engine and AP to forge new, as yet unspecified, revenue streams.

"We look forward to future collaborations, including on ways Google and AP can work together to create a better user experience and new revenue opportunities," said Josh Cohen, senior business product manager for Google News, in a blog post.

For a detailed rundown of the storied negotiations between Google and the AP, see this post on Search Engine Land.