Threatened a company Google will pull its search engine from an entire country – Australia – if a proposed law goes into effect that would force the search giant to pay news publishers for content.
Google Vice President for Australia and New Zealand said, (Mel Silva) Mel Silva, To the Australian Senate Economic Legislation Committee: If the proposed law goes into effect, it will give us no choice but to stop making Google search available in Australia.
She added, and according to For a newspaper The Sydney Morning Herald: We don’t see a way, with financial and operational risks, in which we can continue to provide the service in Australia.
The company, which has been lobbying against Australia’s plan for months, claims the country is trying to get it to pay to display links and excerpts to news stories in its search, not to news articles featured in places like Google News.
Google said: This incident sets an untenable precedent for our business and the digital economy and is inconsistent with how search engines operate.
And Australian Prime Minister (Scott Morrison) quickly responded, saying: We don’t respond to threats, and Australia is setting rules for the things you can do in here, and it was done in our Parliament, and our government did it, and that’s how things work here in Australia.
Google has some notable allies who agree with it. Tim Berners-Lee, the creator of the World Wide Web, introduced it. banner The law risks violating a fundamental principle of the web by requiring payment to be linked to specific content online.
(Vint Cerf), another internet founder who helped design the TCP / IP protocol, shared similar ideas with the committee.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, which drafted the law, appeared to suggest in August that this should not affect Google’s search business.
She said: Google will not be required to charge Australians for using its free services, such as the search engine and YouTube, unless it chooses to do so.
As Google explains, it prefers to pay publishers specifically for content within Google News, and in June announced a program to pay publishers in Australia, Germany and Brazil.
Australia doesn’t seem to think this is enough, and the ACCC explains that the proposed law addresses a significant imbalance in bargaining power between Australian news media companies, Google and Facebook.