Microsoft is hoping to expand its market share in Australia after Google warned it would stop its search service in Australia if the government passed a bill that forced technology companies to pay for news content to the press.
Artwork: The Sociable
In a statement released on February 3, Microsoft President Brad Smith affirmed his full support of Australia’s new bill to require technology firms to pay fees for news agencies. The statement states that Microsoft is “willing to comply with this regulation” if required by the Australian Government.
According to Smith, the bill is a reasonable solution to address the power imbalance between digital platforms and news agencies and is “a fundamental measure towards a more level playing field. and a more equal digital ecosystem for consumers, businesses and society.
“One thing is clear: while other technology companies may warn of leaving Australia from time to time, Microsoft will never pose this threat,” said Smith.
The Microsoft president also said it is willing to refine its search engine Bing and welcome Australian advertisers to the platform “at no transfer costs”.
Recognizing Bing’s humble competence, Mr. Smith pledged Microsoft will “invest more to ensure that Bing can compete with competitors”. He also said that Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella discussed the proposal with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison. In this conversation, Mr. Nadella confirmed that with the existing search engine Bing, Microsoft is fully capable to fill the void if Google stops its search service in Australia.
Under a bill called the Media Negotiation Law, Google and Facebook will have to negotiate and pay press fees to use news content on their platforms. If agreement on the fees cannot be reached, the matter will be referred to arbitration and each party proposes a certain amount. The arbitrator will consider and select the option of either party.
Australia’s leading media companies such as News Corp and Nine Entertainment said that the fee is estimated to be hundreds of millions of dollars a year. However, Google and Facebook both criticized the plan would seriously undermine their business model and the functioning of the Internet. Facebook has warned that it will stop allowing users to post links to Australian news if the document becomes law.
Media outlets around the world have seen their business “devastated” by the loss of advertising revenue that once “poured” into their newspapers, but now by platforms. large digital platforms dominate. Thousands of reporters’ jobs have evaporated and many Australian news outlets have been forced to close in the past decade.
Meanwhile, both Facebook and Google have insisted they are willing to pay news agencies through franchise deals and trade negotiations. These two technology corporations have signed deals worth millions of dollars with news agencies around the world
According to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, Google accounts for 94% of the advertising market in this country. Meanwhile, Microsoft’s market share is only 3.7%. Observers said that with the background of technology and search engines available, Microsoft has wanted to expand the market in Australia. The disagreement between Google and Facebook and the Australian Government is opening an opportunity for Microsoft to realize that intention.
According to the Baotintuc
Australia and Google discuss the bill for media fees
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison held an online meeting with Google Global Director Sundar Pichai to discuss the media fee bill.