Facebook's risky Australia bet 

New Ideas in MarketingEssential news for marketers, summarised by YouGov
February 18, 2021, 5:11 PM UTC

The social media giant has blocked publishers or users from share links to Australian news sites over a proposed new law.

The tech giant's move is dictated by the idea that publishers need it more than it needs the publishers. It is hoping that by hurting news publishers – who get a lot of traffic from the site – it can get the Australian government to back down from enacting the law. 

 William Easton, Facebook's managing director Australia, says the proposed law "fundamentally misunderstands" the relationship the platform has with publishers. Facebook's move is in contrast to fellow tech giant Google, which has come to an agreement with some major publishers.

 While Facebook's argument might hold water, the move does risk backfiring on the company. The move has been condemned by publishers and politicians in Australia and might sharpen the scrutiny on the platform, which also own WhatsApp and Instagram. 

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