THE PROBLEM?

Two US Internet giants — Google, and Facebook — are major distributors for news publishers. They ferry more than 80% of external traffic to various sites, according to Parse.ly, web analytics for online publishers. Earlier, media companies controlled how their publications reached the public and collected all the ad income they generated.

News content has been lucrative for big online platforms. Some 40% of the clicks on the platform’s trending queries are for news. Google made $4.7 billion in 2018 from content produced by the news industry, according to a study. Google disputes the figure.

AUSTRALIA LEADS THE WAY

On Friday, the Australia Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) released a draft news media bargaining code, which would force Google and Facebook to pay for news content in the country.

Australia’s move also comes at a time when the publishing…

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