Facebook Inc. will restore links to news articles in Australia, five days after blocking news from its platform in response to a proposed law requiring tech giants to pay publishers for their content.
“We’re restoring news on Facebook in Australia in the coming days,” Campbell Brown, Facebook’s vice president of global news partnerships, said in a statement late Monday night.
said it had reached a deal with the Australian government to amend the bill, allowing for, among other things, a two-month mediation period to reach deals with publishers before entering an arbitration process if a deal cannot be agreed upon.
“After further discussions, we are satisfied that the Australian government has agreed to a number of changes and guarantees that address our core concerns about allowing commercial deals that recognize the value our platform provides to publishers relative to the value we receive from them,” Facebook said in a separate statement.
The resolution came after talks between Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Australian Treasurer Josh Frydenberg over the weekend.
The social-media giant abruptly blocked news articles from its platform last Wednesday in response to the upcoming law, in a move that drew a hail of criticism. At the time, Facebook said the Australian government “fundamentally misunderstands the relationship between our platform and publishers who use it.”
Google, facing the same regulations, instead made a series of deals with Australian news publishers to comply with the law.
Australia’s Parliament is expected to approve the bill — which is intended to support journalism — soon. Other countries, including Canada, are looking at the Australian model as a roadmap for additional regulation in their countries.