Google hit for billions but EU chief regrets not going harder

Original article by Zoe Samios
The Australian – Page: 4 : 12-Dec-19

The federal government will release details of its formal response to the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission’s digital platforms inquiry on 12 December. Communications Minister Paul Fletcher says the government is working through its response to issues raised by the ACCC. Meanwhile, European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager says that in retrospective she would have taken a "bolder" approach to the anti-trust case against Google. The digital giant was fined more than EUR8bn.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF COMMUNICATIONS AND THE ARTS, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, EUROPEAN COMPETITION COMMISSION, GOOGLE INCORPORATED, FACEBOOK INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT, AUSTRALIAN COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, PRIME MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX PRT

Coalition wary of content tax on tech giants

Original article by Leo Shanahan, David Swan
The Australian – Page: 5 : 4-Dec-19

Facebook says it supports 15 of the 29 recommendations in the final report of the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission’s digital platforms inquiry. Facebook also rejects suggestions that it has hired lobbyists to influence the federal government’s response to the report, and states that the ACCC’s proposed code of conduct would "unfairly shield" media companies. Meanwhile, the government is said to be concerned that requiring digital players to pay media companies for the use of their content could be perceived as a new tax, which could in turn prompt digital companies to relocate offshore.

CORPORATES
FACEBOOK INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, GOOGLE INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF COMMUNICATIONS AND THE ARTS, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT

Facebook defends itself against Twiggy Forrest attack

Original article by Patrick Durkin
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 3 : 29-Nov-19

Facebook has responded to claims that it is not doing enough to address the issue of fraudulent advertisements on its platforms. Carolyn Everson, Facebook’s global head of marketing, says it has launched a "massive crackdown" on scam ads and may take legal action against those responsible for them. Mining magnate Andrew Forrest has called for digital platforms to be treated in the same way as traditional media companies. He is among the high-profile Australians whose photos have been used in scam ads published on digital platforms such as Facebook and Google.

CORPORATES
FACEBOOK INCORPORATED, GOOGLE INCORPORATED, TWITTER INCORPORATED, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM

Stan signs content from Disney’s Fox and ABC

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 21 : 29-Nov-19

Subscription video-on-demand provider Stan has secured a new content deal with Walt Disney Company. The deal includes TV programs that were produced by Disney-owned ABC Networks and 21st Century Fox. However, content from the Disney, Pixar, Marvel and Star Wars franchises will still be exclusively available via the rival Disney+ service at present.

CORPORATES
STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD, WALT DISNEY COMPANY, AMERICAN BROADCASTING COMPANY, 21ST CENTURY FOX INCORPORATED, DISNEY+, HULU LLC, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC

Forrest wants tech giants to be accountable for ads

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 7 : 28-Nov-19

Fortescue Metals Group founder Andrew Forrest argues that technology companies such as Facebook should be treated in the same way as traditional media companies with regard to advertising content that appears on their platforms. He contends that digital companies are not doing enough to address the issue of fraudulent ads, and they must be accountable for the ads that are published on their platforms. Forrest is among a number of high-profile Australians whose images have been used to promote scams on social media platforms.

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Online journos second-class no longer after win

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 6 : 22-Nov-19

The Fair Work Commission has ruled that journalists who work for online-only news publications are covered by the media industry award. The FWC found that minimum employment conditions of these journalists are ‘significantly inferior’ to those of their print peers. Daily Mail Australia has warned that extending the coverage of the Journalists Published Media Award to digital media workers will result in higher wage costs, and its existing operating model may need to be revised if it has to pay weekend penalty rates.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, DAILY MAIL AUSTRALIA, GUARDIAN AUSTRALIA, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, RURAL PRESS LIMITED, MEDIA, ENTERTAINMENT AND ARTS ALLIANCE

Disney explores local tie-ups

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 31 : 18-Nov-19

Walt Disney Company’s Australian MD Kylie Watson-Wheeler has downplayed suggestions that the global media company may seek an alliance with a local telco to offer free subscriptions to the new Disney+ streaming video service. She says Disney has had talks with telcos, but stresses that the Disney+ launch is the top priority at present. Industry sources have suggested that an alliance a telco is unlikely to occur for several months after the local launch of Disney+ on 19 November.

CORPORATES
WALT DISNEY COMPANY, DISNEY+, TELSTRA CORPORATION LIMITED – ASX TLS, SINGTEL OPTUS PTY LTD, VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INCORPORATED, NETFLIX INCORPORATED, FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD, HULU LLC, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM

Code of conduct needed for market failure: Sims

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 31 : 18-Nov-19

Australian Competition & Consumer Commission chairman Rod Sims has stressed the need for technology giants such as Google and Facebook to be subject to a code of conduct in their negotiations with traditional media companies. He has identified this as the most important recommendation arising from the ACCC’s inquiry into digital platforms. He notes that technology companies have made some progress in reducing the imbalance in bargaining power, adding that a code would facilitate this process.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, GOOGLE INCORPORATED, FACEBOOK INCORPORATED, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED, SKY NEWS, JUNKEE MEDIA PTY LTD, PEDESTRIAN TV, AUSTRALIAN COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA AUTHORITY

Privacy, ads focus of reply to report

Original article by Leo Shanahan
The Australian – Page: 25 : 18-Nov-19

The federal government was slated to release its response to the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission’s inquiry into digital platforms by the end of 2019. However, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has indicated that this could be delayed until early 2020, noting that the government is "working through the details" of the ACCC’s final report. He has identified digital players’ dominance of advertising revenue and how they collect and monetise users’ data as key concerns.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF COMMUNICATIONS AND THE ARTS, GOOGLE INCORPORATED, FACEBOOK INCORPORATED

Disney bets billions on content for streaming battle with Netflix

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 23 : 13-Nov-19

The Disney+ subscription video-on-demand service will be launched in Australia on 19 November, following its US debut. Walt Disney Company has revealed plans to invest $US1bn in original content for the new streaming service in 2019, which will increase to $US2.5bn ($3.65bn) by 2024. The media giant forecasts that Disney+ will boast between 60 million and 90 million paid subscribers by fiscal 2024. Netflix is investing some $US15bn on original content during 2019.

CORPORATES
WALT DISNEY COMPANY, DISNEY+, NETFLIX INCORPORATED, 21ST CENTURY FOX INCORPORATED