The confrontation between the Australian government and Facebook has intensified. The Canberra government announced on Sunday that it would no longer run ads on Facebook.
The announcement came at the start of the Australian vaccination campaign against the coronavirus. Health Secretary Greg Hunt said the government would advertise the vaccinations online, just not on Facebook.
The trigger of the dispute is a planned law to regulate the digital news market. The bill was passed by the Australian House of Commons last week. The vote in the Senate is scheduled for the end of this week.
According to the new law, Facebook should pay
The government wants to use the law to require the US Internet giants Facebook and Google to pay the traditional Australian media companies usage fees for the distribution of their journalistic content. The draft provides for fines in the millions for violations. In this way, part of the advertising revenue of the US online giant is to be passed on to the traditional media houses.
Facebook blocks news access in Australia
In response to the proposed law, Facebook has been blocking access to journalistic news content for users in Australia since Thursday. The Australian government has been negotiating with Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg over the past few days about ways to end the conflict.
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