As reported in Bloomberg: “Australia’s parliament passed a world-first law to force digital giants such as Facebook Inc. and Google pay local publishers for news content…. The legislation was passed Thursday and will ensure “news media businesses are fairly remunerated for the content they generate,… ‘We look forward to agreeing to new deals with publishers and enabling Australians to share news links once again,’ [Nick Clegg, Facebook’s vice president of global affairs] wrote in a blog post dated Feb. 24.” Got that??? Does this apply to content that Facebook generates or collects and shares or does it apply to news links Australians share? Perhaps both. Actually, I think that newspapers and other news sources pay Facebook to post their links. It’s called advertising.
But what about the links I post on Facebook and Twitter to articles in the Washington Post, WSJ, and Bloomberg (all of which I subscribe to)? Facebook is the platform on which I post them. Is Facebook being asked to pay the Post and WSJ for my posts? What I do with what I buy from these news services should be between me and these services and should have nothing to do with Facebook. Should Word Press have to pay the sources I link in my blogs? Should AOL have to pay sources I send or link in my email? OK, OK, I am an older gentlemen and got my AOL email address over thirty years ago and I don’t want to change. !!! Should the U.S. Postal service have to peak into my regular mail and pay for any source content that I might be sending someone? This is ridiculous and it should be opposed.