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Australia Australia says no further Facebook, Google amendments as final vote nears

23:21  22 february  2021
23:21  22 february  2021 Source:   reuters.com

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Australia will not alter legislation that would make Facebook and Alphabet Inc's Google pay news outlets for content, a senior lawmaker said on Monday, as Canberra neared a final vote on whether to pass the bill into law. As Australia ’s senate began debating the legislation, the country’s most senior lawmaker in the upper house said there would be no further amendments . “The bill as it stands meets the right balance,” Simon Birmingham, Australia ’s Minister for Finance, told Australian Broadcasting Corp Radio.

Australia will not alter legislation that would make Facebook and Alphabet Inc's Google pay news outlets for content, a senior lawmaker said on Monday, as Canberra neared a final vote on whether to pass the bill into law. As Australia 's senate began debating the legislation, the country's most senior lawmaker in the upper house said there would be no further amendments . "The bill as it stands meets the right balance," Simon Birmingham, Australia 's Minister for Finance, told Australian Broadcasting Corp Radio.

By Colin Packham

a close up of a sign: FILE PHOTO: Google and Facebook logos and Australian flag are displayed in this illustration taken © Reuters/DADO RUVIC FILE PHOTO: Google and Facebook logos and Australian flag are displayed in this illustration taken

CANBERRA (Reuters) - Australia will not alter legislation that would make Facebook and Alphabet Inc's Google pay news outlets for content, a senior lawmaker said on Monday, as Canberra neared a final vote on whether to pass the bill into law.

Australia and the tech giants have been in a stand-off over the legislation widely seen as setting a global precedent.

Other countries including Canada and Britain have already expressed interest in taking some sort of similar action.

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Australia will not alter legislation that would make Facebook and Alphabet Inc’s Google pay news outlets for content, a senior lawmaker said on Monday, as Canberra neared a final vote on whether to pass the bill into law. As Australia ’s senate began debating the legislation, the country’s most senior lawmaker in the upper house said there would be no further amendments . “The bill as it stands meets the right balance,” Simon Birmingham, Australia ’s Minister for Finance, told Australian Broadcasting Corp Radio.

CANBERRA - Australia will not alter legislation that would make Facebook FB.O and Alphabet Inc's Google pay news outlets for content, a senior lawmaker said on Monday, as Canberra neared a final vote on whether to pass the bill into law. Australia and the tech giants have been in a stand-off over As Australia 's senate began debating the legislation, the country's most senior lawmaker in the upper house said there would be no further amendments . "The bill as it stands meets the right balance," Simon Birmingham, Australia 's Minister for Finance, told Australian Broadcasting Corp Radio.

Facebook has protested the laws. Last week it blocked all news content and several state government and emergency department accounts, in a jolt to the global news industry, which has already seen its business model upended by the titans of the technological revolution.

Talks between Australia and Facebook over the weekend yielded no breakthrough.

As Australia's senate began debating the legislation, the country's most senior lawmaker in the upper house said there would be no further amendments.


Video: Concern over algorithms used in blocking 'news' content (ABC NEWS)

"The bill as it stands ... meets the right balance," Simon Birmingham, Australia's Minister for Finance, told Australian Broadcasting Corp Radio.

Media code that prompted Facebook's war on Australia passes the Senate

  Media code that prompted Facebook's war on Australia passes the Senate Australia's world-first media bargaining code that will force online powerhouses including Facebook and Google to pay for displaying news content has passed the Senate.The code, seen as a pivotal step in regulating big tech and ensuring they pay their fair share for locally produced journalism content, will be sent back to the House of Representatives after amendments were made but is expected to pass Thursday.

Talks between Australia and Facebook over the weekend yielded no breakthrough. As Australia 's senate began debating the legislation, the country's most senior lawmaker in the upper house said there would be no further amendments . "The bill as it stands meets the right balance," Simon A Facebook representative declined to comment on Monday on the legislation, which passed the lower house last week and has majority support in the Senate. A final vote after the so-called third reading of the bill is expected on Tuesday. Lobby group DIGI, which represents Facebook , Google and other

Talks between Australia and Facebook over the weekend yielded no breakthrough. As Australia 's senate began debating the legislation, the country's most senior lawmaker in the upper house said there would be no further amendments . "The bill as it stands meets the right balance," Simon Birmingham, Australia 's Minister A final vote after the so-called third reading of the bill is expected on Tuesday. Lobby group DIGI, which represents Facebook , Google and other online platforms like Twitter Inc, meanwhile said on Monday that its members had agreed to adopt an industry-wide code

The bill in its present form ensures "Australian-generated news content by Australian-generated news organisations can and should be paid for and done so in a fair and legitimate way".

The laws would give the government the right to appoint an arbitrator to set content licencing fees if private negotiations fail.

While both Google and Facebook have campaigned against the laws, Google last week inked deals with top Australian outlets, including a global deal with Rupert Murdoch's News Corp.

"There's no reason Facebook can't do and achieve what Google already has," Birmingham added.

A Facebook representative declined to comment on Monday on the legislation, which passed the lower house last week and has majority support in the Senate.

A final vote after the so-called third reading of the bill is expected on Tuesday.

Lobby group DIGI, which represents Facebook, Google and other online platforms like Twitter Inc, meanwhile said on Monday that its members had agreed to adopt an industry-wide code of practice to reduce the spread of misinformation online.

Under the voluntary code, they commit to identifying and stopping unidentified accounts, or "bots", disseminating content; informing users of the origins of content; and publishing an annual transparency report, among other measures.

(Reporting by Byron Kaye and Colin Packham; Editing by Sam Holmes and Hugh Lawson)

Facebook's news ban 'experiment' is almost over. Here's what we've learnt .
Australian news sites have seen a drop in traffic because of the Facebook news ban, with links shared on the platform estimated to be down 80 per cent.With yesterday's news that the ban will soon come to an end, it's worth looking at the results of this vast "experiment" (performed without consent).

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This is interesting!