Australia pronounce content laws successful

Australia on Wednesday said promised laws forcing tech giants to pay media outlets for content had already succeeded after reports that publisher and broadcaster Nine Entertainment Co Holdings Ltd agreed on a licensing deal with Google.

The Alphabet Inc owned company agreed to pay Nine more than A$30 million ($23.25 million) a year for its content, two of Nine’s newspapers reported, citing unidentified industry sources. The deal would be formally signed in the next two weeks, the newspapers said.

Nine would be the second major Australian media company to reach an agreement with Google just as the country’s parliament prepares to pass laws giving the government power to set Google’s content fees.

On Monday, Nine rival Seven West Media Ltd said it had reached a deal that local media reported would also involve the U.S. company paying it A$30 million a year.

The Australian federal government has said it still plans to put the laws – which effectively force Google and social media giant Facebook Inc to strike deals with media companies or have fees set for them – to a vote in the coming weeks.

Last year, seven smaller media companies, specialist websites and a regional newspaper, signed deals to have their content appear on Google’s News Showcase platform, but the country’s main metro outlets failed to reach agreements.

Several large domestic media players, including the local arm of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp – which owns two-thirds of Australian newspapers – have yet to announce Google deals.

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