In Australia, Google and Facebook may have to pay for news content. The Australian government said on Friday it planned to give Google and Facebook three months to negotiate with media outlets to determine the appropriate funding for the appropriate content. The government has released a draft of the Compulsory Code of Conduct, which requires digital companies around the world to pay for news content taken from commercial media companies. Other countries in the world have failed to implement such a code.
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Finance Minister Josh Friedenberg said Google and Facebook were the first targets under the proposed law. Other digital platforms will then be asked to pay as well. “This is a good fit for Australian media companies. It will increase competition, consumer protection and stability in the media sector,” Friedenberg said.
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The draft states that if US digital forums do not reach an agreement with Australian media companies after three months, an arbitrator will be appointed, whose decision will be binding. Friedenberg said the draft would be discussed by August 28. It will then be presented in Parliament. Facebook and Google did not immediately respond.