TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — In the wake of Australia’s passage of the world’s first law making Google and Facebook pay to use locally produced news content on their platforms, the Taipei Newspapers Association is urging the government to take a proactive role in leading negotiations between tech platforms and local news outlets.
"The free lunch mentality for reading news should also be changed among readers," representatives of several major Taipei-based news agencies jointly stated.
Australia's year-long tussle with Facebook and Google drew to a close in late February following the passage of the pioneering law, which forced American tech giants to negotiate with Australian news outlets to pay for their content. Canada, the United Kingdom, and European Union are said to be following suit.
A forum was jointly hosted by the Fair Trade Commission (FTC), an independent agency which is subordinate to the Cabinet and responsible for competition policy, and the Taipei Newspapers Association on Monday (April 12). Representatives of the Commercial Times, the Liberty Times, Up Media, and several other news outlets, as well as media experts, came to the conclusion that the government should take an active role in making digital platforms negotiate with news outlets to pay for content, with the aim of shifting people's mindsets about reading journalism for free.
The participants called for the government to jump on the bandwagon and draft a law to back negotiations with tech giants such as Facebook and Google amid the emerging global antitrust initiative.