After Site Blocks News, Facebook Has 'Tentatively Friended' Australia

Mar 06, 2021 - Views: 813

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After Site Blocks News, Facebook Has 'Tentatively Friended' Australia

After the event of site blocks news this week when many people in Australia had to test wifi speed online many times and thought of poor website performance, Facebook Inc becomes more comfortable and negotiates again, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Saturday.

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Facebook's abrupt decision to prevent Australians from sharing news on the site and strip the pages of domestic and foreign news outlets as well as cleared several state government and emergency department accounts that led to widespread anger.

Morrison said at a news conference in Sydney that Facebook has "tentatively friended us again,". What he was pleased about it that Facebook was back at the negotiable table again.

Facebook has publicly indicated no change in its opposition to a proposed law requiring social media platforms to pay for links to news content. Morrison was not asked about that.

Australia's Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said on Friday he had spoken with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and further talks could occur over the weekend. There is no clear confirmation whether those talks have happened.

Representatives for Frydenberg did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Some downsides happen when Australia vows to press ahead with the landmark legislation, which was able to make a global precedent as countries like Canada express concern with taking similar action.

According to Australian law, Facebook and Alphabet's Google will need to reach commercial deals with Australian publishers or face compulsory arbitration. This law has cleared the lower house of parliament and is possible to be passed by the Senate within the next week.

Canadian Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault said on Thursday his country would adopt the Australian approach as it crafts its own legislation in the coming months.

Despite being the initial company that threatened to close its search engine in Australia, Google has announced a host of preemptive licensing deals over the past week, including a global agreement with News Corp.

Facebook's move influenced immediately traffic to Australian news sites, according to early data from New York-based analytics firm Chartbeat.

Total traffic to the Australian news sites from various platforms fell from the day before the ban by around 13 percent within the country.

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