Google has threatened to withdraw access to its search tool to Australians.
Australia is introducing a law that would make tech companies pay media outlets for their news content.
The proposed legislation would force Google and Facebook into mediated negotiations with news publishers over the value of news content, if an agreement could not be reached between the parties first.
Mel Silva, Google Australia’s managing director has said that the laws are “unworkable,” however.
“If this version of the code were to become law, it would give us no real choice but to stop making Google Search available in Australia,” she claimed.
A large majority of Australians use Google as their internet search provider. According to statcounter.com, Google had a 94 per cent search engine market share in December.
Australian PM Scott Morrison responded with defiance, saying lawmakers would not yield to “threats.”
Proponents of the law argue that because Facebook and Google gain traffic (and advertising revenue) from people who want to read the news, they should be required to adequately compensate the news outlets that produce said content.
It comes as Google announced on Thursday it would pay news publications in France for the use of their content online.
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