The New Zealand government announced on Sunday that it will introduce a new law to require digital companies including Alphabet-owned Google and Meta Platforms to pay news companies in the country for content shared on their platforms.
The proposal will be modelled on similar laws introduced by Australia and Canada, said Minister of Broadcasting Willie Jackson, adding that he hopes it would encourage digital platforms to make deals with local news publishers.
“New Zealand news media, particularly small regional and community newspapers, are struggling to remain financially viable as more advertising moves online. It is critical that those benefiting from their news content actually pay for it.” Jackson said in a statement.
The new proposal will be put to a vote in parliament and is expected to be passed by the majority of the ruling Labour Party.
Following the announcement, Meta’s regional policy director Mia Garlick said that the proposal misunderstands Facebook’s relationship with news, and that news publishers are the ones who are in control of their content shared on the platform, not them. She added that it also doesn’t recognize the company’s existing agreements in the country, as reported by the WSJ.
“We are concerned about the unintended impacts future legislation will have on innovation in both the media and broader tech sector,” Garlick said.
Google hasn’t shared a statement on the matter yet.