Tech

Undeterred by Facebook news blackout, Australia commits to content law

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison vowed on Friday to press ahead with laws to force Facebook Inc to pay news outlets for content, saying he had received support from world leaders after the social media giant blacked out all media.

Facebook stripped the pages of domestic and foreign news outlets for Australians and blocked users of its platform from sharing any news content on Thursday, saying it had been left with no choice ahead of the new content laws.

The move, which also erased several state government and emergency department accounts, as well as nonprofit charity sites, caused widespread outrage.

Morrison, who blasted Facebook on its own platform for “unfriending” Australia, said on Friday the leaders of Britain, Canada, France and India had shown support.

“There is a lot of world interest in what Australia is doing,” Morrison told reporters in Sydney. “That is why I invite … Facebook to constructively engage because they know that what Australia will do here is likely to be followed by many other Western jurisdictions.”

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

As Published by Reuters

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