Google inks landmark agreements with Australian media giants

Google inks landmark agreements with Australian media giants

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Been in google A highly publicized space with the Australian Government In recent months over a bill – the News Media Bargaining Code – that would force Google to pay news publishers for those news in Google search inquiries. The conflict almost turned into a confrontation, with Google at one point threatening to pull the search out of Australia altogether if it was forced to pay for news links and snippets provided by Google .

Now, Google is taking a more interactive approach, following a recommendation by a Senate committee last week to pass the bill through Parliament and become law. On Tuesday, it signed a $ 30 million ($ 23 million) per year deal with Nine Entertainment, a media veteran and one of the biggest advocates for the media code. The deal was reported by the Sydney Morning Herald, one of several news properties owned by the Nines.

This comes after a similar deal with Seven West – another Australian media behemoth who, like Nine, owns TV, radio and print properties – signed an agreement with Google, also for about $ 30 Million value.

This is big news for Australia’s big publishers, who cut lucrative deals with Google and Facebook. But this is certainly big news for Google, who may be forced to execute similar licensing agreements with media companies around the world. European Parliament Member Told CNET last week He hopes to integrate similar measures into legislation coming into Australia’s media code, and a Canadian minister cited as an example Australia pushed Google and Facebook into paying publishers in his country.

For Canada, New Zealand, and perhaps others, “If Australia succeeds in passing the law and shows that it works, it can become an example for others.”

Show time

If it becomes law, the News Media Bargaining Code will give Google and Facebook 90 days to reach licensing agreements to qualify Australian publishers for news content appearing on Google’s search and Facebook feeds Will take If no deal is reached, government-appointed arbitrators will have to make binding decisions on how much, and how, Tech Titans are paid. Google was concerned that this could result in payment for Google search links, arguing that it would abandon the principles of an open Internet.

Deals are being made with Australian media companies Google News Showcase, A global initiative with which Google has paid $ 1 billion to news publishers. Outlets that sign up to the news showcase are paid to provide a curated list of stories appearing in Google News apps. In addition to Australia, the news showcase is live in the UK, Brazil, France and Germany.

News Showcase in Australia.

Google

When the news showcase was launched in Australia in early February, the seven publications originally signed up received between AU $ 200,000 and AU $ 2 million (US $ 150,000 to US $ 1.5 million) from Google. When Google first asked Nine to join the news showcase, the Nines were balked. In early February the Nine spokesperson said, “It’s a monopoly, they make an offer as a Google showcase, but don’t offer to negotiate.”

So what changed Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google-parent Alphabet, reportedly had a “constructive” conversation with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. But with the news code more likely than ever to become law, paying news outlets for Google search links seems likely to be too expensive for the tech giant to run.

“Google is desperate not to pay for news delivered through its search engine,” said James Messe, a senior lecturer in media studies at RMIT University in Melbourne. “It seems they are paying over and above market value, especially for deals that exclude Google search.”

Fair to all

Although the media code is said to be in the name of supporting public interest journalism, there are concerns that it will benefit media giants like News Corp, making it difficult for smaller publishers to compete. The purpose of the media code is to balance the difference in bargaining power between publishers and big technology, but some concerns do not address the difference in bargaining power between publishers large and small.

“This offer [with Nine and Seven] Show that big media companies clearly have more bargaining power, “said Messe,” It’s important to see how the code rolls out to ensure that smaller companies can get a fair deal. “

This is an issue that dog governments around the world should see to decide to follow the example of Australia. It has already surfaced in France, reports ABC, as several independent outlets survived a $ 76 million agreement between Google and APIG, a group that represents 121 French publishers.

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