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18 February, 2021

Facebook takes stick to Australia

Overnight Facebook has restricted publishers and Australians from sharing or viewing Australian and international news content.

By Peter McCullagh

In a move described as a response to the proposed new laws in Australia that will force global giants such as Facebook and Google to negotiate with media companies over how much they will need to pay for news content.

Whilst Facebook feels the laws fundamentally misunderstand the relationship between their platform and the publishers who us it as a news sharing platform.

What is clear today to Australians is that Facebook does not understand their own platform and the social responsibilities they have as the controller of the news feed.

In a global pandemic Facebook has turn essential pages invisible. Queensland Health’s Facebook page is blocked. An essential portal for the dissemination of vital information cannot be accessed on Facebook.

The Bureau of Meteorology and RACQ along with many of the politician’s pages are also restricted. A heavy stick approach without consideration of the function that Facebook plays in everyday life. A function the Facebook themselves have fostered, yet refuse to pay for content.

Cairns Local News’ Facebook page currently is invisible to our followers. We publish approximately 100 local stories each month and reflect the essential news of our community. Our news is free, with no paywall and no subscription required.

Read the full face book notification here: https://about.fb.com/news/2021/02/changes-to-sharing-and-viewing-news-on-facebook-in-australia/




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