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Google Notifies Users in Australia Free Services are at Risk

Google is now popping a message that leads to an open letter to Australians drafted by Melanie Silva, Managing Director, on behalf of Google Australia.

According to the letter, this would provide a biased gain to media companies over other website owners and small businesses. It proposes that it may no longer be able to offer free services in the nation. Silva complained that the proposed laws would undesirably shake Google’s users. She also warned Australians that their ‘search data may be at risk’ while hurting certain services under the new laws.

The free search and YouTube services provide large news publishers confidential info that would provide them an advantage in terms of search rankings on YouTube, meaning content creators would get fewer views and thus make less money. The law also needs platforms to offer news companies nearly a month’s notice of any fluctuations to its algorithms which may affect traffic to news sites.

The Australian Consumer and Competition Commission (ACCC) has pushed back on the open letter and said that new law does not need Google to charge Australians for its free services and Google is not required to share any additional data with newscast firms. Facebook and Google would be required to negotiate their payments to news companies to lay on their content. If a settlement cannot be reached within three months, a sovereign arbitrator would intervene and make a binding decision.

Google’s open letter instructs users to expect to hear more from it in the upcoming days without offering further detail so it remains to be seen what additional campaigns the company cooks up.

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