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ScoMo sucks up to Rupert


old man emu
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ScoMo is  pushing the Federal government of Australia to introduce a world-first law to make Google, Facebook and potentially other tech companies pay media outlets for their news content. ScoMo said his government remained committed to progressing the laws through parliament this year. "Let me be clear: Australia makes our rules for things you can do in Australia. That's done in our parliament," he told reporters on Friday.

 

Media companies, including News Corp Australia, a unit of Rupert Murdoch's media empire, have lobbied hard for the government to force tech firms to the negotiating table amid a long-term decline in advertising revenue. Google's threat to remove its entire search product is its most severe yet. News accounts for just 12.5% of Google searches in Australia, according to lawmakers.

 

So, to pander to the Media Baron, Scomo wants to force a company which is used for 87.5%  of non-news related searches. For us, that means that Red's contributions can't be made because he won't be able to access the material he uses. Any of the rest of us who like to back their posts with researched fact won't be able to make accurate comments.

 

But the Right Wing Conservative media will be able to spill out their propaganda for a profit.

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We all have a bit of a beef with Google at times, but there's no denying it's far and away the best search engine there is when it comes to finding what you search for.

 

Not surprising that Scotty FM would pander to Murdoch as a lot of people think of Murdoch's show as the unofficial media arm of the Liberal/National parties. A lot of truth in that as there's no way they could win an election without Murdoch.

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Is there a possibility that our marketing man has looked at how the US has been divided (and a democratic system questioned by everyone). And decided that their biggest problem was excessive free speech and access to too much social media?

Then looked at the CCP method of controlling their masses by absolute control of Knowledge available on the web, public expression by social media, and exclusion of Google?

 

I can imagine an Australia with no access to uncontrolled world opinion (nearly got that now anyway). And Google wouldn't notice the loss of our business - we would not represent a significant amount of their world wide income stream.

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1 hour ago, nomadpete said:

we would not represent a significant amount of their world wide income stream.

That's true, but there is an old saying, "A penny earned is a penny saved". You don't throw away any sources of income.

 

The alternative to Google are the search engines associated with Microsoft. They can't be too good or the new term for researching a topic would not be "googling it".

 

9 hours ago, willedoo said:

a lot of people think of Murdoch's show as the unofficial media arm of the Liberal/National parties.

That is one of the reasons behind Rudd's petition for a Royal Commission into media concentration. Mr Rudd's petition warns that "Australia's print media is overwhelmingly controlled by News Corporation, founded by Fox News billionaire Rupert Murdoch, with around two thirds of daily newspaper readership".

 

Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) president Mark Jamieson  said he was concerned newspapers and other news outlets were "making the news" instead of reporting it. "The idea is you report the arguments for both sides of a story, maybe more sides, to enable the public to make an informed decision in their own right about what they think is accurate".  The LGAQ represents the state's 77 councils, many of which lost their local newspapers when News Corp shifted most of its outlets to "digital-only" earlier this year. He also raises concerns that local news bulletins and reports are using too much news from out of town. Have you noticed that if you follow the link to a story in one of the major newspapers you can't read it unless you pay to subscribe to the website?

 

To get an idea of how the media has destroyed local newspapers, go to the Trove site https://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/ and see how many small town newspapers there used to be, even in the late 20th Century. I can get two editions of a local newspaper, one for Camden/Wollondilly shires and the other for Campbelltown City. Apart from the police/court news and the "local" sport results, the editorials and feature articles are the same.

 

It's true that physical newspapers are just about a thing of the past, but just because the news is published electronically is no excuse for it to be dominated by publishers biased towards one side of politics or the other, unless you specifically want to read bespoke newspapers. An increasing proportion of the population, especially those under 40, get their news from social media, overwhelmingly from Facebook. The algorithms that tailor what Facebook prioritises for each individual cause users to receive only those topics or opinions that they want to hear. This has led to the formation of echo chambers or information cocoons.

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My point is that China has proved how political stability can be imposed through control of the 'information' available to the masses.

I raised the question whether that goal might be seen as advantageous by any of our governments.

Particularly in view of my cynical belief that our governments seem to me to have a long history of utilising media to influence democratic outcomes (from the days of print, up to the present electronic kind).

 

Of course my suspicion is totally without substance. It's just my musings.

 

PS

Is that an echo I hear in my chamber?

Edited by nomadpete
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11 hours ago, old man emu said:

For us, that means that Red's contributions can't be made because he won't be able to access the material he uses.

You are right, O.M.E., although I don't normally use Google, I doubt that the law can target selected providers, so all search engines will be affected, Bing, DuckDuckGo (the one I use) and others.

 

I think the world has progressed past the point where we can live without search engines. How many students have access to encyclopedias to do their research? You might say "Go to Wikipedia." But how do you find what you want in wiki? With a search engine. Imagine going back to reading classified newspaper ads to find a house to buy or rent, to find a used car and so on.

 

Who wants to pay a subscription to a rag that pushes their own agenda, just to find details of an aircraft incident once in a while? 

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2 hours ago, red750 said:

Who wants to pay a subscription to a rag that pushes their own agenda, just to find details of an aircraft incident once in a while? 

Exactly. It beats me why anyone would pay for the trash published by Murdoch.

2 hours ago, old man emu said:

Have you noticed that if you follow the link to a story in one of the major newspapers you can't read it unless you pay to subscribe to the website?

Thankfully it's mainly Murdoch's various media outlets. Most of the others are free. The only Murdoch one I've found that's free is news.com.au. It's also not as one eyed as most of his publications.

 

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I don't know, I'm with the government on this one.

 

I may have been a bit naive about their motivations, but there's been a real reduction in the number of good journalists working for news services, and a lot of it is because these multinationals just steal the content without paying for it, thereby hollowing out the news organisations.

 

So yes - I'm all for sticking it to Google, Facebook etc in this case.  Pay their damn way and they can continue to use news.  If they have a hissy fit and take their bat & ball and go home, I'm sure other providers will take up the slack.  And if other countries follow Australia's example they may find themselves losing significant market share.

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When was the last time you read good work from an Australian journalist in the Metropolitan newspapers? Most of the content is cut and paste from Reuters or AAP. Where are our "investigative journalists"? Oh! That's right. Murdoch owns the government, so you don't go digging into the Boss's dirty linen basket.

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4 minutes ago, old man emu said:

Most of the content is cut and paste from Reuters or AAP.

Right, O.M.E.

 

Marty, search engines only use algorithms to find the information on other websites, including the newspaper websites, and direct you to those sites, where you get slugged by a paywall. They also lead you to a thousand other sites for all sorts of information. When was the last time you typed the URL of a site when looking for something? First, you have to know where to find what you are looking for. Then you have to know the URL of their website. How many websites do you know, that you can scan for the item you are looking for? Let's say you want a left handed screwdriver. Enter 'left handed screwdriver' in a search engine, and it comes back with hundreds of results....within seconds. You may only need to look at one or two, but you can do a comparison between sites right at home, no travelling. You may not even have heard of some of the places found. Take that away, all for the sake of poor penniless Murdoch? Take away Google, and you take away all the other search engines.

 

 

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Let's take a single example. On Dec 4 last year, I posted a report of a fatal helicopter crash near the Shoalhaven River. I heard a fleeting reference to it and did a search on the web. I found a report in the Sydney Morning Herald. I live in Melbourne and don't get the SMH - or any other newspaper. I was able to post a link to the SMH website. How would I know where to look without a search engine? What about local newspapers in northern NSW or outback Qld? Do I have to subscribe to every newspaper in Australia?

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Another example. I enjoy the UK TV series Who Do You Think You Are? which explores the family history of well known identities. If I look up the synopsis on the TV guide, and it says the subject is actor Nicholas Lyndhurst, the name is unknown to me. With a search engine, I can find out in seconds that he is the actor who played Rodney Trotter in the series Only Fools an Horses, and other roles as well. Then I can decide if I am interested in his story or not.

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Interesting article laying out both sides of the argument.   Whatever constraints are applied to Google will also be ultimately applied to other search engines.   I can see both side of the argument.    We users of the internet have come to believe that everything should be free and we get a bit annoyed when faced with a paywall or excessive advertising. I totally get that creators of content should be paid for there work.   For the most part we don't even notice the free content we use every day.  Back in the day every car owner would also have a Gregory's   Street directory that covered only your city now we use google maps anywhere in the world essentially for free.    My fear is that in monetizing news search results we may end up benefiting the large news organizations over the smaller ones.     Of course Google will still be utilized for searches originating in Australia but many people use a VPN which will be a disadvantage foo Australian sites.   

 

Australia’s showdown with Google has profound implications for domestic businesses and other digital platforms  

 

 

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Sir Timothy John Berners-Lee OM KBE FRS FREng FRSA FBCS  proposed an information management system on 12 March 1989, then implemented the first successful communication between a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) client and server via the Internet in mid-November. He invented the Internet. He is opposed to ScoMo's plan because he gave it to the world for free, and he wants it to be kept free.

 

Although he has received heaps of awards and accolades, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_awards_and_honours_received_by_Tim_Berners-Lee ,he has never made a penny from his invention. He gave the Internet to Mankind. I suppose that if you give something away, you have lost the right to say how it is used, but sometimes we must go by the exception to the rule.

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