With the ease of availability of the internet, big tech companies like Facebook, Google, and Twitter have become popular platforms for the users not for the entertainment purpose but also for knowing the latest happenings of the world. Nine European press agencies are asking the three internet giants to pay money as copyright for using news content on which they are making millions.
“Facebook has become the biggest media in the world, Yet neither Facebook nor Google has a newsroom… They do not have journalists in Syria risking their lives, nor a bureau in Zimbabwe investigating Mugabe’s departure, nor editors to check and verify information sent in by reporters on the ground.,” a statement read in the French daily Le Monde on Wednesday.
“Access to free information is supposedly one of the great victories of the internet. But it is a myth,” the press agencies proclaimed. The increase in the use of these big brands for news has led to big ad revenue losses for other companies.
“Years have passed (without anything being done) and free and reliable news gathering is now threatened because the media will simply no longer be able to pay for it. Diverse and reliable news sources, a pillar of democracy, risk being undermined. Attempts by news agencies in France, Germany, and Spain to force internet giants to pay have only resulted in them coughing up a ‘few symbolic crumbs’ the news agencies added.
The complete appeal to make these companies pay for the news content is signed by AFP, the German agency DPA, the Swedish agency TT, Austria’s APA, Britain’s Press Association, Italy’s Ansa, Belga of Belgium, the Spanish agency EFE, and the Dutch agency ANP.