French Newspapers Teaming Up in Digital Content Negotiations with Apple

newsstand icon buttonWith Apple set to broaden access to digital subscription content with the debut of its prominent Newsstand feature in iOS 5, Reuters reports that a group of major French newspapers are banding together to strengthen their positions in negotiating with Apple over digital distribution.

The bid by eight publications, including newspaper Le Figaro and sports daily L'Equipe, is the latest sign of growing disillusionment among some global publishers over what they consider Apple's rigid terms and high commission of 30 percent.

[...]

They are also negotiating with Apple as a collective, and will not sell their products on Apple's own kiosk, dubbed the Newsstand, set to launch next month, without key concessions.

The report notes that media companies have already made some headway in resisting Apple's demands, with Apple backing off on its pricing demands for in-app purchases and subscriptions earlier this year. Prominent business newspaper Financial Times has also made a stand by pulling its iOS application and utilizing a well-regarded web app to offer its content without being subject to Apple's rules.

Le Figaro executive Pascale Pouquet said the French publications were still in talks with Apple over whether it would accept the changes to the kiosk, but insisted that the papers would not fold on their key demands such as a reduction in the 30 percent commission and access to the customer data.

"We'll have to be ready to accept to lose some sales if we cannot come to terms with Apple," he said. "But sometimes it's better to cut off a finger than to sever the whole arm."

The publications have come to terms with Google to sell their content for Android, with Google charging only a 10% commission on sales and allowing publishers to have control over pricing and customer data collection.

Apple has been firm in its stance regarding a 30% commission as has become standard for many types of content on the iOS platform, and has insisted on users retaining control over whether their personal information is shared with the publications.

Top Rated Comments

Fotek2001 Avatar
149 months ago
And while the 30% commission to Apple is expensive, I'm still very happy that they refuse to allow anything that takes user data for advertisers.

Sharing data is a separate issue that's not really relevant in the EU since it's illegal without user's express consent.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
testcard Avatar
149 months ago
Finally the french do something useful.

In addition to providing the world with something in the region of 400 types of cheese.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
*LTD* Avatar
149 months ago
Finally the french do something useful.
I guess what de Grasse's navy did at the Battle of the Chesapeake in 1781 wasn't really all that important.

It only ensured that the Americans would be able to win at Yorktown (using French naval and ground forces under Rochambeau, who commanded them.) No biggie.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
.11 Avatar
149 months ago
Don't be so sure about that:

Image (http://f.cl.ly/items/460x152u1f1S0G224616/Goo%20%2B.png)

???

What, is that image supposed to prove your point? Google's asking you whether or not you want to give Zygna permission for all of that info, they aren't giving it away to them.

If you don't want Zygna to have that info, say "No thanks" and don't play the game.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
scoobydoo99 Avatar
149 months ago
Google don't give away or even sell their customer's data, I don't know where this myth comes from. They collect and use it for targeted advertising but you can't go and buy it from them.

You don't actually believe that, do you? Google's main business is data mining and brokering. Every service they offer, from search to Google+, is designed to harvest, store, and analyze data so that Google can sell that information or products based upon that information. Simple user lists, with real names and telephone numbers can be had relatively cheaply from Google, with more in-depth data available for an appropriate price.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Fotek2001 Avatar
149 months ago
Paying for content is inappopriate when it can all be gotten for free. why
pay for news when it is mostly political proaganda anyways.

How do you know the free stuff isn't political propaganda? Who do you trust?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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