After a series of negotiations, Facebook and the Australian government reached an agreement and the news pages on the social network returned to air in the country. "After further discussions with the Australian government, we have reached an agreement that will allow us to support the publishers we choose, including small local publishers," says Campbell Brown, Facebook's head of news partnerships in a statement.

She explains that the government has clarified that the platform will maintain the ability to decide whether the news appears on Facebook or not. “Thus, we are not automatically subject to forced negotiation”, he adds.

Government wants tech giants to pay news publishers. Credit: Shutterstock

New legislation seeks to remunerate news publishers

Facebook, the Australian government and the country's media sector, represented by Rupert Murdoch, have been debating the terms of the new news media trading code for months. This bill aims to require tech giants like Google and Facebook to pay news content publishers for everything they produce.

Among the proposed amendments is the adoption of a two-month period for mediation. The idea is to give news publishers and technology platforms more time to negotiate deals. Facebook argues that the law is unnecessary, since publishers receive a high amount in the form of revenue from clicks on their websites.

US urges Australia to repeal law charging Facebook and Google for using news
World watches with attention to what happens in Australia. Credit: Graeme Dawes / Shutterstock

Test for the rest of the world

The bill for remunerating news editors is seen as a kind of test for similar bills that must be proposed around the world. The result may indicate a path to be followed for the regulation of the media industry on social networks.

To show its dissatisfaction, Facebook decided to scan the platform's news pages in Australia. The measure is seen as arbitrary by representatives of world powers such as the United States, United Kingdom, Germany and Canada, who called Facebook a “bully”.


In contrast, Google, which threatened to take away his search service the country, sought a more conciliatory path. The company closed agreements with Australia’s largest news publishers and will pay for content to avoid the stricter aspects of the new legislation.

Street: The Washington Post

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