Australian publishing house Nine Entertainment Co Holding announced that it has signed multi-year agreements with both Google and Facebook. The agreement with Google is for five year and for three years with Facebook. The agreements mean that all major Australian media companies now have agreements to provide news to Google news showcase and Facebook news tag.
Australia recently introduced a new copyright legislation saying that big tech companies must pay publisher for using their content and if they can’t agree on the pricing, this is decided by an independent panel. It sems obvious that Google and Facebook have decided to reach agreements directly with publishers avoiding price being decided by an independent panel which both of the violently protested against.
Nine said the agreements would mean increased pre-tax profit by up to A$40 million (USD 31 million) in the year to June 2022. No other financial details about the agreements were published.
Australia has become a test market for big tech platforms paying publishers to use their content online thanks to the country’s new copyright law. Both Google and Facebook have earlier not only reached agreements with the other two dominating media companies in the country but also with a large number of smaller publishers.
The Australian legislation has become a model discussed in many other countries. Google search competitor Microsoft has joined forces with European publishers recommending European legislation to include regulations like the Australian.
The new EU copyright directive, also meant to make big tech pay publishers, should have been implemented in all EU countries by April this year but this implementation seems to be patchy with several finding reasons to postpone the introduction.
France was the first country in the EU to introduce it in national legislation. After many discussions, Google in France reached an agreement to pay some publishers for providing news to Google news showcase but not all which is the basic idea with the EU copyright directive. French publishers not included in the agreement protested.
Google and Facebook have both said they will spend one billion US dollars each on content from publisher during a three year period but only on publishers they themselves chose to sign agreements with.