Elon Musk’s X sued by AFP for allegedly refusing to pay for news


No public figures are available for how much publishers earn under the code from other big tech companies.

Evidence from Australia, which has implemented a similar policy, suggests that the sum will be in the hundreds of millions.

France’s law includes platforms such as Google, Facebook parent Meta. 

The law was passed in 2019 over concerns that big tech companies were profiting from news content without adequately compensating publishers.

In 2021, France fined Google €500m for allegedly failing to talk to the country’s news publishers about paying for content, but the case was settled last year after parent company Alphabet agreed to a remuneration proposal.

Before the rise of big tech in the 2000s, news publishers held a major portion of the world’s advertising market. Those revenues funded newspapers, radio stations, magazines and more.

Yet the rise of ad-funded online platforms such as Google and Facebook saw advertisers big and small flocking to those companies instead, drawn by the promise of hyper-accurate targeting and profiling of audiences.

Google recently unveiled advertising revenues of $58bn for the last three months alone.

Meta currently pays French publishers for using their content and is also doing so in Australia, despite briefly blocking news stories from being shared in that country last year as a protest against similar laws.

Australia’s news bargaining code has resulted in big tech companies paying an estimated $140m a year to publishers, according to the Poynter Institute.

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