Google rumoured to be pressing ahead with Showcase in Australia

Google Australia is reportedly in discussions to proceed with the launch of its News Showcase product in Australia, according to reports from The Sydney Morning Herald, a Nine Entertainment Co publication.

Google Australia would not comment on the media commentary when contacted by Mumbrella.

Google first announced plans to launch News Showcase in Australia in June 2020 and signed deals with seven publishers covering 25 titles, including  Crikey, The Saturday Paper, The Conversation and regional newspaper business Australian Community Media. According to Google, those publishers have been receiving 25% of their monthly Showcase amount as a matter of good faith even though the product has not been live.

It is understood that informal discussion between major media outlets such as News Corp, Nine and Seven West Media have continued throughout the Media Bargaining Code development according to coverage in both The Sydney Morning Herald today, and The Australian Financial Review in November.

Last week Google announced a deal with The Alliance de la Presse d’Information Générale following months of negotiations with the Competition Authority in France as well as a global deal with Reuters.

Google Australia has consistently maintained that it is not opposed to paying for news content, its issue is with the current code’s requirements to pay for links and snippets via the search function.

Facebook has also signed news publication agreements for its news product in overseas jurisdictions and said during the Senate Committee Hearing on Friday that it would like to launch its News product in Australia, but that the current proposed code prohibits that.

Facebook said it had no further comment to provide* about the launch of its news product in Australia following the senate hearing on Friday.

*This is updated from an earlier version of the article.


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