SAN FRANCISCO – Facebook said on Monday it had reached an agreement with the Australian government that would allow users and publishers across the country to share and re-view links to news articles on the social network.
Facebook last week blocked the sharing or viewing of news links in Australia because the country was about to pass a law requiring tech companies to negotiate with media publishers and compensate them for the content that appears on their sites.
The legislation includes a code of conduct that would allow media companies to negotiate individually or collectively with digital platforms on the value of their news content.
But on Monday, the Australian government added amendments to the proposed code. This included a two-month mediation period, giving both sides more time to negotiate trade deals that could help Facebook avoid having to work under the code.
In return, Facebook agreed to restore news links and articles to Australian users “in the next few days,” according to a statement from Josh Frydenberg, Australian treasurer, and Paul Fletcher, minister for communications, infrastructure, government. cities and the arts.
“Above all, the amendments will strengthen the hand of regional publishers and small publishers to obtain appropriate remuneration for the use of their content by digital platforms,” the statement added.
Campbell Brown, vice president of global news partnerships for Facebook, said in a statement, “We are re-establishing Facebook news in Australia in the coming days. Going forward, the government has made it clear that we will retain the ability to decide whether news appears on Facebook so that we are not automatically forced into forced negotiation.
Mike Isaac reported from San Francisco and Damien Cave from Sydney, Australia.
This is a developing story and will be updated.