French media agency AFP sues Twitter over news content remuneration

AFP took legal action to obtain an urgent injunction with a court in Paris.

French international news agency AFP has announced legal action against Elon Musk’s Twitter, which was recently rebranded to X, over copyright rules.


The agency said its aim was to force Twitter to provide the data required for assessing remuneration to the organisation.

“Agence France-Presse (AFP) has expressed its concerns over the clear refusal from Twitter (recently rebranded as ‘X’) to enter into discussions regarding the implementation of neighbouring rights for the press,” the news agency said in a statement.

“These rights were established to enable news agencies and publishers to be remunerated by digital platforms which retain most of the monetary value generated by the distribution of news content”.

An EU directive, that was incorporated into French law in 2019, provides that news publishers should be compensated for the digital reproduction and communication of their content as part of their “neighbouring rights” or “related rights”.

Elon Musk, who acquired Twitter in October 2022 and recently rebranded it to X, called the case “bizarre”.

“They want us to pay *them* for traffic to their site where they make advertising revenue and we don’t!?” Musk wrote in a social media post.

Other tech giants have come to agreements with French news publishers to compensate them for their content.

AFP said it would continue to advocate for the “adoption of neighbouring rights for the press”.

“The Agency will continue to employ the appropriate legal means with each relevant platform to ensure the fair distribution of the value generated by the sharing of news content,” they added.


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