“The Australian parliament on Thursday passed a new law designed to force Alphabet Inc’s Google and Facebook Inc to pay media companies for content used on their platforms… The legislation was watered down, however, at the last minute after a standoff between the government and Facebook culminated in the social media company blocking all news for Australian users [for 5 days].” Reuters
“Facebook took particular issue with a baseball-style arbitration clause in Australia's new media code, which would see a government-appointed panel set the payout rate if the parties can't reach a deal… On Monday, the [Australian] government released four amendments to the media code. The amendments basically say that the new code, which is still expected to pass, may not apply to Facebook if it can broker enough deals with publishers… The government essentially gave Facebook more time to broker deals with publishers before the law takes effect.” Axios
The left supports the intent behind Australia’s policy but criticizes its execution and Facebook’s response.
A libertarian's take
“This is all about the historically common disruption that new technologies cause in the marketplace. Newspapers are no longer the best at serving up advertising to consumers, so that market went elsewhere. After engines were invented, horses stopped being the most efficient way to travel. After electricity was invented, candles stopped being the most efficient artificial source of light…
“Newspapers and media outlets have no moral right to claim this money for themselves. The advertising industry money should go to where it's most effective. But because media outlets have been unable to replace the lost advertising, they've resorted to lobbying the government with claims that preserving newspapers is pivotal to the survival of democracy, riding on the current populist criticism of the size of tech companies.”
Scott Shackford, Reason