The Financial Times has uncovered that Google has emailed publishers receiving money from its Digital News Initiative (DNI), lobbying against proposed changes to EU copyright law. Google is against the copyright directive, and has asked DNI member publishers through email that they contact members of the European Parliament to come to the rescue.
According to the FT, Madhav Chinnappa, Google’s director of strategic relations, wrote that the “timing is urgent” and provided a link to a directory of MEPs. “If you feel strongly about this, please consider contacting the MEPs,” he said.
Kassandra’s two cents: reaching out to publishers who they directly provide financial support for to achieve lobbying goals is less than ethical. Google’s response to the FT was that the email was sent to publishers… in response to a request from them for information about the EU copyright directive.
And they all lived happily ever after.