Tech giant Facebook threatens to block news sharing in Australia

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Social media giant Facebook has threatened to block Australians from sharing news articles if lawmakers there approve a proposal to make it pay news outlets for their content.

In a blog post dated Monday, facebook indicated it will “reluctantly” stop users and publishers from sharing local and international news on Facebook and Instagram rather than negotiate fees with publishers.

“This is not our first choice it is our last,”  “But it is the only way to protect against an outcome that defies logic and will hurt, not help, the long-term vibrancy of Australia’s news and media sector.” Will Easton, managing director for Facebook Australia and New Zealand, wrote in the post.

Often times tech giants like Facebook and Google have been lampooned even in the US, for contributing to the gradual disintegration of journalism by using news content created by others to drive their own traffic and ad revenue.

In the US, the Department of Justice has fielded complaints about companies like Google forcing struggling publishers into unfair agreements if they want their content promoted.

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