News CEO Vents Fury At Google And Facebook’s “Digital Duopoly”

News CEO Vents Fury At Google And Facebook’s “Digital Duopoly”
SHARE
THIS



News Corp CEO Robert Thomson (pictured above) has blasted tech behemoths Google and Facebook, labelling them a “digital duopoly” who use their vast power to basically service their own bottom line.

In a speech to the Asia Society in Hong Kong on Wednesday night titled “The Fake, The Faux, The Facts, The Future”, Thomson said Google had used it algorithms to blur the distinction between real and fake news and had created a “dysfunctional and socially destructive” environment for journalists and publishers alike.

Thomson’s full speech has been reproduced here.

“Both [Google and Facebook] could have done far more to highlight that there is a hierarchy of content, but, instead, they have prospered mightily by peddling a flat earth philosophy that doesn’t wish to distinguish between the fake and the real because they make copious amounts of money from both –  for them, free content has been free money,” Thomson raged.

“It is risible, no, no, no, beyond risible, that Google/YouTube, which has earned, literally, hundreds of billions of dollars from other people’s content, should now be lamenting that it can’t possibly be held responsible for monitoring that content,” he said, delighting in Google’s current ad bans for showing ads next to hate videos on YouTube.

“Google has been reactive in their response to controversy, and you do wonder whether they will start to invest more and frankly be more candid about their role as a publisher,” said Thomson. “They claim to be a technology company, and that absolves them of any responsibility of what they publish.”

Interestingly, the federal government’s new media laws – due to be debated in the senate anytime soon – will include caveats that Google and Facebook will have to start paying for content it takes from Australian publishers.

The gripe is that the two can simply reproduce any publishers content for free and then monetise it with ads, while traditional media is weighed down with the enormous cost of producing it in the first place.

“The digital duopoly has rewritten the rules in a way that has written much journalism and integrity out of the script,” Thomson said.

“The only cost of content for these companies has been lucrative contracts for lobbyists and lawyers, but the social cost of that strategy is far higher, as is becoming painfully and thankfully clear.

“It really is time to pay more attention to these algorithms, which are clearly set, tuned and adjusted by the companies to suit their own interests and are far from being objective,” he said.

Latest News

Enero Agencies Team Up To Reveal What Makes A Brand Truly Great
  • Marketing

Enero Agencies Team Up To Reveal What Makes A Brand Truly Great

Insight and strategy consultancy The Leading Edge has conducted research into what makes a brand great. In partnership with its sister Enero group agencies Hotwire and Orchard, the report identifies five specific roads that take brands from good to great to greatness. The findings reveal that brands which encompass greatness have five distinct qualities: passionate vision, a sense […]

HP & Planet Ark Help Aussies Face Up To Plastic Pollution With Monster Installation
  • Campaigns

HP & Planet Ark Help Aussies Face Up To Plastic Pollution With Monster Installation

Australia is home to some of the deadliest predators in the world. But nothing has posed a greater threat to our environment and marine life than single-use plastic. A new report by HP and Planet Ark released last week found that Aussies rate marine plastic pollution as their top concern when it comes to environmental […]

HP & Spikes Asia Announce Finalists Of ‘Young Spikes Design Competition’
  • Media

HP & Spikes Asia Announce Finalists Of ‘Young Spikes Design Competition’

Ten teams of young creatives will vie for the prestigious Young Spikes Design Competition Award at Spikes Asia 2018, a three-day festival of creativity held between 26-28 September 2018. The competition garnered 123 submissions – the most of any Young Spikes competition – from executives aged 30 and under across the Asia Pacific and Japan. […]

Director Appointment Strengthens Corporate Affairs Specialist Wilkinson Butler
  • Media

Director Appointment Strengthens Corporate Affairs Specialist Wilkinson Butler

Corporate affairs agency Wilkinson Butler is delighted to welcome Nick Albrow to join its board as a director. Albrow joins chairman Peter Wilkinson and managing director Andrew Butler as the business builds on its reputation as one of the leading crisis and issues firms in Australia. Joining in September 2017 as an account director, Albrow has […]

Mastercard Marketing Chief Sarah Pike Exits
  • Marketing

Mastercard Marketing Chief Sarah Pike Exits

Mastercard marketing boss Sarah Pike has exited. Sadly, not via a half-pike somersault with twist, but the actual exit.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Adobe Appoints New ANZ Marketing Director
  • Marketing
  • Technology

Adobe Appoints New ANZ Marketing Director

Adobe announces new ANZ marketing 'big cheese' who's set to go by the title of marketing director and not Queen Gouda.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Publicis Media Agencies Named ‘Leaders’ By Independent Research Firm
  • Media

Publicis Media Agencies Named ‘Leaders’ By Independent Research Firm

Publicis Media agencies Zenith and Starcom were named a ‘Leader’ and a ‘Strong Performer’, respectively, in The Forrester Wave: Global Media Agencies, Q3 2018. Both agencies were among the select companies that Forrester invited to participate in this evaluation of the media agency landscape. Zenith received the second-highest score in the ‘Strategy’ and ‘Current Offering’ […]