Yesterday the Associated Press filed a lawsuit in the Southern district of New York against Oslo-based Meltwater News for copyright infringement. The AP complains that the Norwegian company sells articles, which are produced and owned by the AP, to paying customers without a license. The news wire wants an injunction against Meltwater as well as financial compensation.
Laura Malone, AP acting general council, is quoted in the AP's press release about the suit: "Meltwater earns substantial fees for redistributing premium news content, while bearing none of the costs associated with creating that content."
The AP also complains that, because Meltwater only pays to distribute, but not to create journalism, it can afford to undercut the AP's rates. The news agency has already lost clients to Meltwater including the US department of Homeland Security and fees from Lexis Nexis and Factiva.
What's more, the AP complains that Meltwater shares "lengthier" and "more systematic" extracts from AP news articles than other aggregators, without adding its own editorial commentary. The AP accuses Meltwater of holding onto a "vast archive of AP articles", a high proportion of which are no longer publically available on the internet.