Sunday, February 21, 2021

Australia Vs Facebook - the heart of the matter.

This article by the CBC addresses the story. In it, they suggest teaming up to take down big tech may be the best way to do it. Canada is considering an Australian style law, and calls for regulation are increasing. The whole idea is to take down the control big tech has over the world. More and more ad revenue goes to them, and Google's deal with News Corp shows that such deals can indeed be reached. In fact, some are looking at making a "Digital Stability Board" that would help co-ordinate relationships between world governments and global big tech. 

But, let me tell you something about all of this that the media has ignored. The "thing" they want to stop and control, is you posting links to stories. They don't want you to do what I just did above. They want to stop you from being able to do so on facebook. 

But... after I summed up the entire article, is there any reason for you to go read it? Or will you simply stay here and give blogpost, and thus google, the view. The argument governments are presenting are not without merit, but they are approaching this from the wrong prospective. 

These laws are being written to purposefully obfuscate that their intention is stopping people, like you and me, from using facebook and google (and, probably later, twitter too) in ways that make people not need to read newspapers. 

This is a much larger issue, and one that the public needs to be educated on an involved in. We should not be telling facebook that they must stop people from posting links, we must tell the people that the law does that, and not depend on facebook to explain that to people. 

Regardless, the australian law is currently very poorly written. It would, for example, remove my control to moderate comments on this very blogpost (if I, or the CBC, were Australian) Why? How? Section 52S of this draft bill spells it out. This would allow news outlets like newsmax and oann to delete any factual content that disputes their biased reporting. It would also, by implication, mean that Facebook/Twitter would not be allowed to declare fake news content as fradulent. They'd be forced to abide by whatever deal they come up with, and, (looking at what happens when facebook is, as is current, refusing to deal with anyone) force them to make deals with everyone. 

This is big, and this is important, and neither the government, the media, nor facebook are terribly concerned in telling you how all of this would impact you

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