Decision comes amid standoff between government and tech companies over whether they should pay for news
By Andrew Griffin
Feb. 18, 2021
Facebook will stop allowing people in Australia to read or share news content on the platform, it has said.
Facebook had initially threatened to pull news content in August, relatively early in discussions about the new law. The decision to act on that threat comes as the legislation is set to be debated in parliament ahead of being voted into law.
Australian publishers will now be banned from sharing or posting content on their Facebook pages. International news organisations will still be able to publish news as normal, but those stories will not be able to be viewed or shared by users in Australia. Readers in Australia will not be able to access any news content from anywhere, and international readers will not be able to access Australian news content.
Facebook was clear that the changes will only affect news content and pages in Australia, and that the rest of its other products and services will not otherwise change. “We want to assure the millions of Australians using Facebook to connect with friends and family, grow their businesses and join Groups to help support their local communities, that these services will not change,” Facebook said.
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