Denmark angry at Google censorship of some Danish content, seeks talks

FILE PHOTO: After the company announced it would extend its coronavirus work-from-home order until summer 2021, a Google sign is shown at one of the company's office complexes in Irvine, California, U.S., July 27, 2020. REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo

COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Denmark, angry at Google’s censorship of some Danish content over an argument over copyright, said on Monday it was seeking talks with the Alphabet-owned tech giant.

Google removed all music by Danish artists on the Danish site of video streaming platform YouTube in early August, following failed negotiations on copyright with music licensing organisation Koda.

“It is a huge challenge for the distribution of Danish music that a dominant platform such as YouTube (Google) removes Danish titles from the platform due to a conflict of rights,” culture minister Joy Mogensen said in a statement.

“Google also owes it to clarify on how and how much artists are paid and what they will do to ensure rights and a fair settlement.”

Mogensen said she would invite Google to a meeting with representatives of all political parties to discuss its “role in the Danish market”.

Google was not immediately available for comment.

Last week, Google also temporarily blocked an app on its digital store because it “contained depictions of tobacco, pipes and dangerous activities not suitable for children under 13”, according to Danish daily Politiken. Google lifted the ban a few days later.

Mogensen said on Monday Google’s ban of the app, which streams content for children made by public broadcaster DR, was “transgressive”.