As of 18 February, Facebook has put its foot down against the long standing fight with Australian government and news publications. Facebook has officially restricted people and news organisations from sharing or viewing Australian and international news content.

Why has this happened?

This has been in response to the Media Bargaining law the Australian government has put into effect in order to protect its news publications. The Media Bargaining law is a regulatory push that will see Publishers negotiate payments with Google and Facebook for having links to the content they produce.

More on the ACCC law here.

What does this mean for news publishers? 

Any news profiles have lost the ability to share any content on Facebook. Their profiles still exist, but all content has been blocked. Users are now greeted with the below. 

This update will have substantial impacts on news publication website traffic, as well as revenue that this free traffic generates per year – est. at $405 billion. 

What does this mean for users? 

Facebook users will not be able to view any news related content on the platform. News content, currently, makes up about 4% of the overall content shared on Facebook. However, that 4% drove approximately 5.1 billion free referrals to Australian publishers – wowzers.

The impact of this change on users will be significant. Users will now be required to view and source their news elsewhere – most likely through a search engine. **enter Google**

What does this mean for advertisers & brands? 

For advertisers and brands outside of the news publication industry, nothing at this time will be impacted. Advertising costs are expected to stay stable and no major changes to the competition in the newsfeed. 

However, if brands have posted any news articles they are being featured in, these links will now show an error loading message. If your content has been wrongfully blocked, Facebook is working to get those unblocked. Please reach out to support.

As ever – we will keep our clients and followers up to date. Keep an eye out for additional updates on our social pages and website

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