(RepublicanReport.com) – Australia has recently made headlines around the world for its moves against Big Tech. A legislative proposal there would see companies like Google and Facebook pay for news content shared on their platforms. Despite resistance, this system looks set to go into force for a year, after which officials will review it.
US lawmakers have seen the potential in this type of approach. Last Wednesday, a bipartisan group introduced legislation that would help content providers to negotiate with large online platforms like Facebook and Google. While it wouldn’t compel tech companies to pay for content, it would allow news providers to come together to work out payment deals with the platforms, strengthening their positions.
Unsurprisingly, Big Tech doesn’t welcome the proposal. While both Facebook and Google declined to comment on it, industry groups and lobbyists have already begun working against it.
According to a report from Reuters, many critics feel that these companies are using content to advertise or drive traffic without paying publishers fairly. Both companies, particularly Facebook, put up a fight when Australia’s government first suggested they pay content providers.
📲 "Facebook seems to be a bastion of free speech up to and until the moment its revenue is endangered." Dr Carolina Are [@bloggeronpole] from @CitySociology, on @Facebook's recent decision to block its Australian users from sharing/ viewing news content: https://t.co/Ve5ZxTgDxC pic.twitter.com/W46CDsrmbd
— City, University of London (@CityUniLondon) March 14, 2021
This legislation is still in its infancy, so it’s difficult to say with certainty how effective it will be. However, it looks like a sensible first step toward a more mutually beneficial relationship between tech platforms and their American users.
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