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Facebook lifts message block in Australia

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The Australian government has reached an agreement with Facebook in the dispute over media content on the platform. The Internet giant will unblock Australian news sites on its online network in the coming days, Chancellor of the Exchequer Josh Frydenberg announced on Tuesday. After days of negotiations with Facebook, the government under Prime Minister Scott Morrison agreed to make changes to a planned media law. This is reported by the AAP news agency.

“These changes will give digital platforms and news media more clarity about how the law should be applied and strengthen the framework for companies in the news media sector to be fairly remunerated,” it said. Facebook welcomed the agreement in a statement. They are satisfied that the Australian government has approved a number of changes and assurances.

On Thursday, Facebook had blocked news pages on its platform for Australian users. Since then, Facebook users have no longer been able to share national or international journalistic content. In doing so, the company opposed a bill by the Australian government that would force Google and Facebook to pay local media companies if they distribute their content. Australia wants to achieve that advertising revenue is distributed more fairly. The dispute had escalated recently. The government announced on Monday that it would withdraw planned advertisements on Facebook.

dpa / jb

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