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Sunday, January 24, 2021

Calling Big Tech's bluff

The national governments are finally beginning to call Big Tech's bluff to withdraw their services if they can't keep freeloading on other people's content:

Australia’s treasurer has advised the tech giants to accept that their platforms will have to start paying for content, amid threats from Facebook and Google to limit services in the country if such a policy is enacted.

Canberra is finalizing legislation that would require the internet behemoths to obtain licenses to use content created by Australian news outlets. Both companies have warned that they would retaliate over the revenue-sharing scheme, with Google saying last week that it would remove its search engine from Australia, and Facebook declaring that it would strip news from the feeds of all Australian users.

On Sunday, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg pushed back on the ultimatums, signaling that the Australian government wouldn’t reverse course. “My view is that it is inevitable that the digital giants will be paying for original content,” he said, suggesting that Australia was leading the way in what would soon become a worldwide norm. He also admonished Facebook and Google for their hostility towards the proposed regulation, describing their threats to pull out of Australia as a “big disservice.” 

Google has been particularly unreceptive to the proposed legislation. Earlier this month, it was revealed that the Silicon Valley giant has been experimenting with blacklisting some Australian news sites from its search results, apparently as a future strategy to avoid having to pay for hosting the content. The move shocked Australian media outlets, which accused Google of carrying out a flagrant show of force to stop the revenue-sharing code from becoming law. 

As China and Russia have both demonstrated, a nation is much better off banning the predatory global tech corporations than accommodating them. 

51 Comments:

Blogger Sapper January 24, 2021 10:42 AM  

It would appear that there might be a thinning of the canopy shading the swamp starting to occur?

Blogger Randomatos January 24, 2021 10:46 AM  

Forget China and Russia, just look at America. The control Deep Tech wields over the host/subjugated populace and government is beyond Orwellian at this point.

Blogger Doktor Jeep January 24, 2021 10:50 AM  

And the United States of Usury is the source of the evil. As usual.

Blogger Brett baker January 24, 2021 10:53 AM  

How soon before we see "Australia, the new Nazi Germany" stories if this law gets implemented?

Blogger Cloudbuster January 24, 2021 11:08 AM  

Both companies have warned that they would retaliate over the revenue-sharing scheme, with Google saying last week that it would remove its search engine from Australia, and Facebook declaring that it would strip news from the feeds of all Australian users.

And the very next day everyone in Australia who wants to use those services sets their VPN location to Hong Kong or Japan.

Blogger Hammerli 280 January 24, 2021 11:13 AM  

The Silicon Valley Megalomaniacs may have bought the Democrats in Washington, but the rest of the world is on to their schemes. And is putting up a fight.

And in the end, the global market is so much larger that freedom will probably prevail.

Blogger L January 24, 2021 11:25 AM  

Facebook won't feed news to Aussies? Oh no, please don't throw me in the briar patch!

Blogger Anne January 24, 2021 11:36 AM  

I am confused about what this would look like in practice.
Suppose Google paid licencing fees to ABC, but not NBC. Would that mean only ABC would show up in the search results? This sounds wrong, but my imagination is failing me.

Blogger Phelps January 24, 2021 11:43 AM  

Google tried to slide into the government's shoes too obviously. Of course, I don't think that there would a way for them to do it without the government's notice, but big tech isn't as indispensable as they think they are (yet.)

Blogger Harambe January 24, 2021 11:43 AM  

Imagine the sheer cheek.

Blogger Anthony January 24, 2021 11:47 AM  

Facebook banning news sites could be the best improvement facebook could make. It would be a much better site if it were people sharing cat and dog pics and talking about their kids and vacations and jobs.

Blogger Romulus January 24, 2021 11:58 AM  

Just build your own Stralia mate.

Blogger T.L. Ciottoli January 24, 2021 11:58 AM  

As Uganda showed our weak-ass congress-scum how to stand up against a small valley full of tech dorks.

For God's Sake.

Blogger Johnny January 24, 2021 12:00 PM  

Perhaps the Australian government should vote a little seed money to be given to one or more local companies to start their own search engine, enough so they don't lose out in case the government changes its mind.

Blogger Crunchy Cachalot January 24, 2021 12:07 PM  

The move shocked Australian media outlets, which accused Google of carrying out a flagrant show of force to stop the revenue-sharing code from becoming law.

If they were truly "shocked", these Ozzie news hawks really haven't been paying attention to the petulant children that dwell in the Valley of Silicon.

Blogger Ferdl January 24, 2021 12:28 PM  

Yeah, we are in bad conditions if we hail the Josh Frydenbergs of this world as our saviours.

Blogger TMLutas January 24, 2021 12:28 PM  

A bit more information would be helpful. Treasurer Joshua Anthony Fryndenberg is deputy leader of the Liberal party, which in Australia's way of doing politics means that he's center-right. For people deeply involved in politics on the international level, that might be a given. The rest of us concentrating on other things need to look that up.

The press does "name that party" games lots of ways. It is a disservice to the people when they do, always.

As for the special pleadings that Google and Facebook want regarding their use of content, I would have chosen differently for a solution, namely to trim the copyrights that those two IP holders maintain. I recognize that this would probably not be politically realistic though.
What the Australian government is doing is an improvement on the status quo and probably the best available solution.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 January 24, 2021 12:28 PM  

Don't forget about Uganda banning Big Tech before their elections.

Blogger weka January 24, 2021 12:30 PM  

You never read the Stories about Queensland every time the country party gets in to fix up the mess Labor makes, have you?

Blogger Bezzle January 24, 2021 12:46 PM  

When GOOG gaps down eight hundred bucks a share, I'll consider this to be anything other than phony-baloney harrumphing. Then, after the equity bagholders are shellacked, additional evidence will be needed that it was other than Cabal money-sloshing and Danegeld payment.

All fat corps are harvested in time.

Blogger Crunchy Cachalot January 24, 2021 1:00 PM  

@11 - Facebook would be a much better site if everyone was sharing their tips for performing home lobotomies.

Blogger Gallant January 24, 2021 1:33 PM  

This is very interesting. . . . Oz politicians are capable of levels of idiocy and cuckery that would stagger you all; but it is of a different flavor, and they believe a little more in govt supremacy (i.e. Google's challenge may have had the opposite effect on an Oz cuck politician to a US cuck politician).

I.e. what I'm hoping now is that worldwide, cracking down on the Big Tech vermin becomes the obvious move that even stupid, cowardly, incompetent politicians see doing so as their best course of action.

Blogger Realjimsmith January 24, 2021 1:34 PM  

Could this be the deep state ensuring that any potential competing platforms won't be able to enjoy the protections that have enabled big tech to become big tech? Now that presumably the main purpose for THEM ensuring that big tech even had such power during this particular moment in history has been achieved? Now they can crack down and make sure no social media site can even launch without probably millions of dollars in regulatory compliance just to start onboarding any users. Sorry folks who are down on cryptos here, but I think truly decentralized services are likely going to be a big part of the solution from what I can see.

Blogger MATT January 24, 2021 1:45 PM  

All because of one man. Blackpillers can sit on it.

Blogger Unknown January 24, 2021 2:22 PM  

Facebook, Google, Twitter, and their parent corporations still need to be punished for their role in rigging the 2020 election.

Blogger Swamp Fox January 24, 2021 2:38 PM  

One of the biggest truth bombs that I’ve leaned from Vox is that you can make an argument communism is better for a nation than globalist corporatism.

Amazing point.

Blogger Reader January 24, 2021 2:55 PM  

Two mob gangs fighting over territory. I've always said government is just the most organized of organized crime but now I have to change it to government and corporations are the most organized of the organized crime syndicates. And it appears that some governments are themselves corporations. Many are the layers of evil in this fallen world.

Blogger aps January 24, 2021 3:50 PM  

Not to mention the still prevalent hand wringing about Cronulla 2005.

Blogger Paul M January 24, 2021 4:15 PM  

Thoughts on the emerging superpower CANZUK ?

Blogger Muzz January 24, 2021 4:25 PM  

Straya

Blogger Canadian Warlord January 24, 2021 4:54 PM  

Mammoth nanny states and geographical separation. The Aussies are ahead of the Anglosphere in terms of hate speech laws. But as with the EU, giant government will fight the turf war to dominate its slaves more than it will allow big tech to do.

Somehow canada, with its privacy laws, still remains on the sidelines. I guess the screaming harpies in the border clinging cities don't give a crap. Meanwhile I can't even get my own phone records from the phone company without the courts getting involved.

Poland is taking big swings lately too, love to see it. Worked for a Polish guy in the 90s, him and his brother (and his mom I hear) would cart out sugar packets from cafes. I guess sugar was hoarded by the commies in the 80s? The Poles are absolutely hilarious - like when they paid off their IMF debt and then the next day their entire government died on a plane crash, on the way out to a memorial dedicated to their proud army officers' mass grave site. They keep fighting back, love it!

Blogger Gallant January 24, 2021 5:04 PM  

Scuffles like this are useful too in that they pit 'legitimate' institutions against eachother. Here google is pitting itself as the more fundamental institution - in a way it's right; but any adversary has to look at it that if they don't stand up to them now, it won't be any easier when they're bigger and stronger.

Blogger Shane Bradman January 24, 2021 5:07 PM  

Frydenburg, despite being Jewish, is one of the worst treasurers this country has ever seen. The one comfort is that the government as a whole has a hostility towards the internet. One of the side effects of this hostility is the slowest and least reliable internet among first world countries, but that only means less consumption of degenerate content.

Blogger SeeNuts_8 January 24, 2021 5:50 PM  

Australia is used as a test bed for Globohomo's policies. This maybe a signal that after OrangeMan Bad big tech is at peak usefulness for fakenews dissemination and it is time to throw the dead tree media a bone. The Govt faction wants power back from the Tech-Intel agency faction. The dead tree MSM is reliant on Govt's advertising for COVID fear p0rn. The Govt is paying the piper and calling the tune.

Blogger Ominous Cowherd January 24, 2021 6:06 PM  

Crunchy Cachalot wrote:@11 - Facebook would be a much better site if everyone was sharing their tips for performing home lobotomies.
Facebook is home lobotomy.
Shane Bradman wrote:Frydenburg, despite being Jewish, is one of the worst treasurers this country has ever seen.
Gonna guess (((he))) takes good care of the money after it goes in (((their))) pockets.

Blogger John in Indy January 24, 2021 6:15 PM  

I think there may be more to this fight, as Google is making just such a deal with the major French news outlets, per an AP news story viewed on 01.24.2021.
Realjimsmith may have a point that this is a way for the Axis of Evil to pull the ladder up after themselves.
John in Indy
John in Indy

Blogger Phelps January 24, 2021 6:15 PM  

And the very next day everyone in Australia who wants to use those services sets their VPN location to Hong Kong or Japan.

95% of the population has no idea what a VPN is, and in fact thinks that VPNs are actually illegal.

Blogger John in Indy January 24, 2021 6:16 PM  

I think there may be more to this fight, as Google is making just such a deal with the major French news outlets, per an AP news story viewed on 01.24.2021.
Realjimsmith may have a point that this is a way for the Axis of Evil to pull the ladder up after themselves.
John in Indy
John in Indy

Blogger Glaivester January 24, 2021 6:20 PM  

What exactly does "paying for content" mean in this context? They have to pay to be able to link to other sites? They have to pay to reproduce articles? I am not certain what it is they have to pay for, and how would this affect other sites that link to outside material?

I'm all for sticking it to Google and FaceBook, but how would this affect everyone else?

Blogger Eru Ilúvatar's will in flesh January 24, 2021 6:34 PM  

Necessary to take charge of China.

Blogger Cwyn January 24, 2021 6:40 PM  

Coming soon the US, only with an axe and tears.

Blogger MEGAMUS Maximus January 24, 2021 7:30 PM  

@2 Farely certain Vox is mentioning Russia and China because they both ensured that their countries wouldn't be run by Orwellian big tech. Don't be fooled by the propaganda, the informal social credit system Zuckerborg and Engels Dorsey want to implement is 100x worse than the one China has.

Blogger nswhorse January 24, 2021 8:43 PM  

As an Australian, I would be devastated if I had to continue to use a search engine other than Google. As for zuccbook removing Australian news sites, I'm scratching my head trying to figure out how that would be a bad thing for those Australians still on there.

Blogger Crunchy Cachalot January 24, 2021 9:17 PM  

@39 - It's the slightly painful but necessary end of the Cult of Free.

Blogger Dark glasses Woody January 24, 2021 9:30 PM  

I wonder if this is theatrics and the intent is to move away form national news and habituate younger generations to a global news format.

Blogger Gallant January 24, 2021 10:05 PM  

Glaivester wrote:What exactly does "paying for content" mean in this context? They have to pay to be able to link to other sites? They have to pay to reproduce articles? I am not certain what it is they have to pay for, and how would this affect other sites that link to outside material?

Point is google makes money putting ads around searches. You go there to also get good results. If some searches didn't yield news articles you'd be less likely to go there.

Vast difference with people sharing links and not making money off of them.

I don't mention this to judge the laws but this is what it's about. At the other extreme, were google unable to leverage the existence of other content, their search engine would be worthless and they couldn't make ad $

Blogger RadixMalorum January 25, 2021 12:39 AM  

MEGAMUS Maximus wrote:@2 Farely certain Vox is mentioning Russia and China because they both ensured that their countries wouldn't be run by Orwellian big tech. Don't be fooled by the propaganda, the informal social credit system Zuckerborg and Engels Dorsey want to implement is 100x worse than the one China has.


China typically leaves people alone unless there are direct subversive/hostile actions being taken against the government or culture. Its social credit system is also very clearly defined with tiers and numbers and what will cause changes to those numbers.

There's also always a route to be "redeemed" with the Chinese regime if you run afoul of the system. (public apologies, 'good' behavior going forward, etc)

Big tech wants to utterly destroy you forever with no chance of redemption and make you die in the streets or kill yourself based on arbitrary and undefined rules that subjectively change day to day based on the whims of whatever SJW is in charge of the numbers in the trust and safety council on any given day.

What big tech is doing will lead to a totally unworkable society. I don't know if that's part of the plan or they are really that stupidly arrogant.

Blogger Unknown January 25, 2021 12:55 AM  

Can the gewgle afford to pay for content? I read where they're barely scraping by on the billions they make each year.

Blogger wahr01 January 25, 2021 1:53 AM  

The correct response to a foreign monopoly threatening to black out your country's businesses is to escalate by blocking the monopoly from your country.

I wonder how screwed google's stock ticker would be if they suddenly couldn't operate in Australia.

Blogger Cloudbuster January 25, 2021 9:25 AM  

Every school kid knows what a VPN is, and Virtual Shield ads are ubiquitous on YouTube.

Blogger Crunchy Cachalot January 25, 2021 10:27 AM  

But apparently Biden don't like him any of the Facebook.

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