The vaccination campaign against the coronavirus has started in Australia. However, vaccination is not advertised on Facebook.
In the dispute over usage fees for publishing content, the government wants to put pressure on the company.
The confrontation between the Australian government and Facebook has intensified. The Canberra government announced on Sunday that it would no longer post ads on Facebook. The announcement came at the start of the Australian vaccination campaign against the coronavirus. Health Secretary Greg Hunt said the government would advertise the vaccinations online but not on Facebook.
The trigger of the dispute is a planned law to regulate the digital news market. The bill was passed by the Australian House of Commons last week. The vote in the Senate is scheduled for the end of this week.
The government wants to use the law to require the US Internet giants Facebook and Google to pay the traditional Australian media companies usage fees to distribute their journalistic content. The draft provides for fines in the millions for violations. In this way, part of the US online giants’ advertising revenue is to be passed on to the traditional media houses.
In response to the proposed law, Facebook has been blocking access to journalistic news content for Australia’s users since Thursday. The Australian government has been negotiating with Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg over the past few days about ways to end the conflict.