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Facebook row; Australian PM Scott Morrison talks with PM Modi

Facebook row is getting even worse with the high-stakes talks between Australia and Facebook. The problem began after the social media giant sparked global outrage by blacking out news for its Australian user. Facebook has blanked out the pages of media outlets for Australian users. They have been blocked from sharing any news content. Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said he had spoken with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to find a way out of the showdown.

“We talked through their remaining issues and agreed our respective teams would work through them immediately,” Frydenberg said. Prime Minister Scott Morrison urged Facebook to “move quickly past” what he called a sort of threatening behaviour. He also told the Facebook to “come back to the table”.

He said his government’s world-first legislation to stress Facebook and Google to pay Australian media for news content published on their platforms was gathering interest from leaders all around the globe. “People are looking at what Australia is doing,” he said. He also mentioned that he had already discussed the situation with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Canada’s Justin Trudeau.

Australia’s new legislation called the News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code was approved this week. The approval was given by the lower house of parliament. It will be subjected to debate beginning Monday by the Senate. However, the the law is expected to be adopted by the end of the week. Facebook made response saying the legislation “fundamentally misunderstands” the platform’s relationship with media organisations.

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