Aus legislation to make Google, Fb pay for news in parliament next week




By Colin Packham


CANBERRA (Reuters) – Australia will introduce landmark legislation to force Alphabet’s and to pay publishers and broadcasters for content next week, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said on Friday.



Australia is on course to become the first country to require and to pay for news content, legislation that is being closely watched around the world.


“The bill will now be considered by the parliament from the week commencing 15 February 2021,” Frydenberg said in an emailed statement.


With bipartisan support, the legislation – which says is “unworkable” and will force it to pull out of the country altogether – could come into law this month.


The acceleration of the bill came as a senate committee examining the proposals recommended no amendments.


Representatives for Google and did not immediately comment when contacted by Reuters.


The U.S. search and social media giants have pressed Australia to soften the legislation, with senior executives from both companies holding talks with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Frydenberg.


Google last week launched a platform in Australia offering news it has paid for, striking its own content deals with publishers in a drive to show the proposed legislation is unnecessary.


Last month Reuters said it had signed a deal with Google to be the first global news provider to Google News Showcase. Reuters is owned by news and information provider Thomson Reuters Corp.


Google and a French publishers’ lobby also agreed in January to a copyright framework for the tech firm to pay news publishers for content online, a first for Europe.


 


(Reporting by Colin Packham; Editing by Stephen Coates)

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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