Australia’s Treasurer has slammed Facebook’s ban on Australian news content, warning it will ruin the social media giant’s reputation down under.
Speaking to reporters in Canberra on Thursday, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said the ban cements the “
“Facebook was wrong. Facebook’s actions were unnecessary, they were heavy-handed,” Mr Frydenberg said.
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“Their decision to block Australians’ access to government sites – be they about support through the pandemic, mental health, emergency services, the Bureau of Meteorology – were completely unrelated to the media code which is yet to pass through the Senate.”
Mr Frydenberg said despite today’s escalation, the G
When asked whether the Government was blindsided by the sudden move by Facebook, Mr Frydenberg said there was no warning.
Mr Frydenberg said the actions of Facebook are a shock, as the social media giant had been in discussions with Australian media companies.
The dramatic escalation has seen emergency service pages across the country also cleared of all content and banned from sharing any further posts.
Queensland Health, Gold Coast Health, the Bureau of Meteorology, DV Connect, Translink, RACQ Lifeflight and Rize Up Australia are just a few of thousands of essential Facebook pages that have been taken down.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said she is “very concerned” and urged the Federal Government to “see sense and sort this issue out quickly.”
“I think the Federal Government needs to sort this out quickly,” she said.
“You cannot have vital information not getting to people when that is where they go to get their source of information, so it needs to be fixed up and it needs to be fixed up today.”