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Google and Getty Images sign photo licensing deal

Google is partnering with stock photo provider, Getty Images, in a multi-year global licensing deal allowing it to use Getty’s content within its various products and services.

According to Dawn Airey, CEO of Getty Images, the company will licence its content to Google, working closely with them to improve attribution of their contributors’ work and thereby growing the ecosystem. She added that they can move forward with a strong partner to deliver innovative ways to access creative and editorial content online.

Cathy Edwards, Engineering Director at Google said that the company will use Getty’s images across many of our products and services, starting immediately. Google did not divulge any more details of the deal.

In this partnership, according to The Verge, Google will make copyright attribution and disclaimers more prominent in image search results and will remove view links to stand-alone URLs for Getty photographs.

Interestingly, this may mark the end of a clash between the two companies, when Getty Images filed a competition law complaint against Google in 2016 with the European Commission. According to Getty’s complaint, changes made to Google Images in 2013, which displayed in search results captivating galleries of high-resolution, copyrighted content, leaving little impetus to view the image on the original source site. Getty claimed that this impacted its image licensing business, and content creators around the world, and also promoted piracy, resulting in widespread copyright infringement, turning users into accidental pirates.

Tech news portal Search Engine Island writes that when Google redesigned image search in 2013, it removed the background image of the source website, so the users had to click the “visit website” button to see the webpage. As a result of that change many publishers saw significant traffic losses from image search results, including photography and stock photo websites.

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