Google Threatens Australia For Payment Issues, Morrison Replied

- Jan 23, 2021-

In response to Australia's plan to introduce a digital media law, the conflict between Google and the Australian government is further escalating. According to a report by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on the 22nd, at the Australian Parliament’s Senate hearing on Friday, Google’s executives in Australia made it clear that the Australian Digital Media Law’s draft was “unworkable”. There is no other choice but to stop the search service." In response to Google’s remarks, Australian Prime Minister Morrison made a tough response later that day, saying: “What you can do in Australia depends on Australia. You are willing to accept it, we welcome it, but we will never accept threats.”

According to CNN, last summer, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission began to take the lead in advancing the digital media law. The bill allowed publishers to negotiate collectively or individually with technology giants to reach media content payment agreements, and set up three The time limit for reaching a monthly payment agreement. However, Google proposed amendments to the Australian method, including paying more than one billion U.S. dollars to media publishers to use its content within three years. Google Australia executives said that leaving Australia is the last choice Google wants to make, and Google will not do so as long as there are other options. Facebook executives who also participated in Friday’s hearing said that the Australian law case may force Facebook to block content from Australian media publishing agencies, but also hopes that certain changes will make the bill “viable”.

   CNN stated that on the 21st, Google and the French Press Alliance (APIG) jointly announced a landmark agreement on the payment of copyright fees. News organizations can collect fees from online platforms that display their news summaries. This is the first time the American Internet giant has reached such an agreement with a press and publishing group. According to the report, Google and traditional media publishers have been in a see-saw on payment matters for a long time. In 2019, the European Union comprehensively revised the new copyright regulations, requiring platforms such as Google and YouTube to be responsible for their users' copyright infringements. It also requires search engines and social media platforms to share revenue with traditional publishers when displaying content from traditional publishers. So far, France is the only EU country that has transformed the new copyright regulations into national laws. It is expected that other EU countries will also promote the implementation of the regulations before the deadline (June 7).

   The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) said that Google is Australia’s main search engine and has almost no competitors. The platform has attracted many customers who want to read news, which has had a serious impact on the country’s news industry. Since 2005, the advertising revenue of traditional media has fallen by 75%. Australian regulators believe that the introduction of the bill aims to maintain fair competition, and that strong traditional media will help the country's democratic construction. Industry analysts who support the bill say that giants such as Google and Facebook dominate the Internet advertising market, and traditional media and publishing organizations can only grab leftovers and survive. However, some people believe that the bill threatens Internet freedom. In addition, the media tycoon Murdoch dominates the traditional media field in Australia. The Australian government has pushed for a new bill to allow American technology giants to pay Australian publishers, which is equivalent to benefiting Murdoch’s media empire. dispute.

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