Online Advertising, Market Competition, Data and Transparency: Opportunities & Challenges for the Ads Ecosystem in Australia (Program Synthesis)

BACKGROUND NOTE:

  • December 2020: The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has introduced The News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code (“Code”)1 to govern negotiations between digital platforms publishers regarding the payment terms for news content. The stated purpose of the Code is “ensure that news media businesses are fairly remunerated for the content they generate, helping to sustain public interest journalism in Australia.
  • News publishers have often sought higher pay out from digital news aggregators on the ground that such digital aggregators benefit from the news pieces produced by the new publishers. The digital news aggregators in turn argue that the news snippets used by them link back to the home page of the relevant news publishers and drive traffic towards them, instead of away from them. News publishers in countries such as Australia and France have complained against the rising market power of the digital platform, seeking regulatory intervention.

Panel Summary

The Panel was moderated by George Siolis (RBB Economics) who highlighted that one of the peculiarities of the digital economy is that given zero pricing for services, consumers often pay for the services by way of their data, that gives rise to special type of competition concerns. He also noted the tendency of market power getting entrenched  with few market players in the digital economy d

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