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Making Facebook and Google pay for news worked, says Australia

Making Facebook and Google pay for news worked, says Australia

Sydney: A government report from Australia stated that its law-making Facebook owner Meta Platforms and Alphabet Inc's Google paying for news from media outlets has worked. The new law demands that internet companies make content supply deals with media outlets.

The News Media Bargaining Code took effect in March 2021. The review says it has largely worked and may need to extend to other online platforms. According to the report, tech firms have made over 30 deals with media firms. This compensates them for the content that generates clicks and money from advertising, reported Reuters.

Assistant Treasurer Stephen Jones said the review shows that the Code has been successful in balancing bargaining power between news media and digital platforms. He added that digital platforms must continue to negotiate in good faith with news businesses to ensure they are fairly remunerated for the news content they create.

Google director of government affairs and public policy in Australia Lucinda Longcroft echoed the same sentiments and said Google has furthered its significant contribution to the Australian news industry by signing deals representing 200 mastheads. Most of the outlets Google made a deal with are regional or local.

The report published by the Treasury Department said: "At least some of these agreements have enabled news businesses to, in particular, employ additional journalists and make other valuable investments to assist their operations. While views on the success or otherwise of the Code will invariably differ, we consider it reasonable to conclude that the Code has been a success to date."

It also recommends that the government consider other methods of assessing the administration and effectiveness of the law. A suggestion to change the law was not in the report. However, it mentioned that the new law lacked a formal mechanism to extend the Code to other platforms. A competition regulator who can report on this question is recommended.

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TAGS:FacebookGoogleAustralianew supply
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