Menu Close

Google says it will shut search engine in Australia if forced to pay for news

Australia is on course to pass laws that would make the Big Tech giants negotiate payments with local publishers and broadcasters for content.

SYDNEY – Google said on Friday it will disable its search function in Australia if the government proceeds with a media code that would force it and Facebook Inc to pay local media companies for sharing their content.

Australia is on course to pass laws that would make the Big Tech giants negotiate payments with local publishers and broadcasters for content. If they can’t strike a deal, a government-appointed arbitrator will decide the price.

“The code’s arbitration model with bias criteria presents unmanageable financial and operational risk for Google,” Mel Silva, managing director for Australia and New Zealand, told a senate committee.

“If this version of the code were to become law, it would give us no real choice but to stop making Google Search available in Australia.”

Google’s comments drew sharp rebuke from Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison who said the country makes its rules for “things you can do in Australia.”

“People who want to work with that in Australia, you’re very welcome. But we don’t respond to threats,” Morrison told reporters.

The United States government this week asked Australia to scrap the proposed laws, which have broad political support, and suggested Australia should pursue a voluntary code instead.

Australia announced the legislation last month after an investigation found Alphabet Inc-owned Google and social media giant Facebook held too much market power in the media industry, a situation it said posed a potential threat to a well-functioning democracy.

Google’s threat to limit its services in Australia came just hours after the internet giant reached a content-payment deal with some French news publishers.

Google’s testimony “is part of a pattern of threatening behaviour that is chilling for anyone who values our democracy,” said Peter Lewis, director of the Australia Institute’s Centre for Responsible Technology.

Article: Google says it will shut search engine in Australia if forced to pay for news

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

(UN General Assembly, 1948) The Universal Declaration of Human Rights: 1. All human beings are free and equal 2. No discrimination 3. Right to life 4. No slavery 5. No torture and inhuman treatment 6. Same right to use law 7. Equal before the law 8. Right to be treated fair by court 9. No unfair detainment 10. Right to trial 11. Innocent until proved guilty 12. Right to privacy 13. Freedom to movement and residence 14. Right to asylum 15. Right to nationality 16. Rights to marry and have family 17. Right to own things 18. Freedom of thought and religion 19. Freedom of opinion and expression 20. Right to assemble 21. Right to democracy 22. Right to social security 23. Right to work 24. Right to rest and holiday 25. Right of social service 26. Right to education 27. Right of cultural and art 28. Freedom around the world 29. Subject to law 30. Human rights can’t be taken away