Google and Facebook Inc. Won a significant concession in Australia as the government unveiled the details of a world-first law to force digital giants to display newspapers.
Legislation introduced in Australia’s parliament on Wednesday required Google and Facebook to compensate publishers for the value of their stories for the platform.
But in an amendment to an earlier draft, the law now also recognizes the monetary value the platform provides to news businesses by directing readers to their websites.
While the details will be debated by lawmakers and can be changed, the wording changes after a month-long campaign by Google to blur the law. The tech giant argued that publishers also benefit from additional readership numbers online when available on the platform.
Facebook took a hard line. The American social media company has threatened Australians that they will stop sharing any news on their sites if the law is passed. Different responses have made Australia a test case as efforts are being made to rein in the vast advertising power of digital giants worldwide.
A spokesperson for Google, owned by Alphabet Inc., said it was too early to comment on the law.
Facebook, according to its earlier stance, said on Wednesday that it was reviewing Australian law.
“We will continue to engage through the upcoming parliamentary process, with the goal of embarking on a workable framework to support Australia’s news ecosystem,” Facebook Australia managing director Will Easton said in a statement.
The legislation is designed to support the local media industry, including Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp, which has struggled to adapt to the digital economy.
Australia’s Treasurer Josh Friedenberg said on his website, “Australian news media businesses should be fairly compensated for the creation of original content and reflect the rules of the digital world.” “This new mandatory bargaining code is a world-first.”
An arbitration panel will decide how much the technology companies will have to pay the publishers if both parties cannot agree on their own payments according to the law, which the government is not expected to be legislative before going to parliament this week in February. .
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV employees and published from a syndicated feed.)