Facebook blocks news content in Australia as Google strikes back
Australian Prime Minister Morrison said he nor the government would not be intimidated by giant tech companies like Facebook or Google. The Prime minister also added that he is in constant contact with other world leaders on these issues, and they will not be intimidated.
From Thursday Facebook is no longer allowing Australia’s people to view or share any local and global news sites. This comes before a law that would require the company to pay the media publishers in exchange for viewing their content. Elsewhere in Australia, people who use social media cannot post or share posts from online news sources.
This legislation comes due to news outlets complaining how they have had to cut costs while Google and Facebook have made billions through digital advertisements. The Australian Parliament is also debating new legislation targeting google; this involves a panel to make pricing decisions. Neither Facebook nor Google wants this legislation to go through. Legislation wishes to pass the laws by the end of this week. Google has threatened to make it where Australia can not use its search engine.
The response to the ban by Google and Facebook has not been positive, although Google is currently working out a monetary deal with Australia. Morrison further urges Facebook to work with the government as Google has done.
Around 17 million people in Australia visit the tech giant each month, mostly reading the news there. Human Rights Watch’s Australia director said Facebook censoring information flow is a dangerous turn of events. Julian Knight, Head of the British parliamentary committee, said Facebook was a bully boy response.
The move also faced criticism abroad. Julian Knight, the head of the British parliamentary committee overseeing the media industry, told Reuters news agency that what Facebook was doing is a “bully boy action.”