Australia passes media law as Facebook defends blackout
February 25, 2021
Facebook says it was asked to pay a "potentially exorbitant price" in a dispute with Australia over payments to media groups. Australian lawmakers have now officially passed the newly amended media law.
Australian lawmakers on Thursday passed the final amendments to a new media law that forces tech giants like Google and Facebook pay for news.
The original legislation would have forced firms like Facebook to pay media organizations for news shared on the social network.
The government can now assess whether companies like Facebook have made a contribution to the Australian news industry before deciding where payments are necessary. It also lets Facebook and other tech giants strike their own deals with local companies.
Ahead of Parliament passing the law, Facebook defended its blanking out of media outlet pages for Australian users, while pledging to invest at least $1 billion (€822 million) to support journalism.