Google 'wants to pay for expertise, not links', says Silva

Jan 06, 2021 at 05:59 pm by Staff


Google has repeated its objections to Australia's proposed News Media Bargaining Code, claiming it would break the way its Search product works.

In a new post by ANZ managing director Mel Silva, the tech giant claims it supports the "important goal" of supporting publishers' financial future but says its approach is "deeply flawed".

The new blog comes ahead of a final review of the code by a Senate committee. Silva (pictured) earlier said the proposed legislation fell "far short" of workable, and detailed ways in which it could hurt online services used by Australians daily.

"If the code became law today, it would break the way Google Search works undermining the benefits of the internet for millions of Australians, from small business owners across the country, to literally anyone trying to find information online," Silva says in an open letter on Google's blog.

She claims the rules would dismantle a "free and open service that's been built to serve everyone, and replace it with one where links come at a price, and where the government would give a handful of news businesses an advantage over everybody else."

Google's business in Australia would be placed at "enormous risk".

The search giant says it wants deals with publishers to pay them through its Google News Showcase programme, for which A$1.3 billion globally has been earmarked over the next three years. Google would pay for the "editorial expertise" of news businesses and what it calls "beyond-the-paywall" access to journalism, rather than links.


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