DNPA Dialogues kicks off: Leading media houses discuss antitrust, big tech

Several leading media organizations and Australia’s think tank and antitrust regulatory circles converged on Friday at the inaugural edition of the DNPA Dialogues, a first-of-its-kind conference to be hosted by the Digital News Publishers Association (DNPA).

The DNPA Dialogues is a forum for Indian Publishers where they will learn and understand firsthand from the experience of publishers in other countries and how the Government and legislatures intervened to support the news industry.

India’s media industry exchanged ideas with the Australian dignitaries and brainstorm ways to build better, fairer and fruitful partnerships between tech giants, such as Google and Facebook, and the country’s news publishers.

Rod Sims, former Australian antitrust stalwart, is the keynote speaker at India’s first-of-its-kind roundtable on emerging changes in Big Tech and Digital Media relationship, hosted by the Digital News Publishers Association. Sims was instrumental in getting Australia’s News Media Bargaining Code rolled out, which made it easier for Australian news media to sign deals with tech platforms such as Google and Facebook. He headed the ACCC from 2011-2022. He is now a professor with the Crawford School of Public Policy at Australian National University, and Chairman of the Steering Committee, Competition Research Policy Network at the Centre for Economic Policy Research, in London. 

Australia has witnessed a positive outcome from Google and Meta deal with the leading media businesses in the  country, Sims said.  He  said news media  bargainig code is great way to improve journalism in the countries. 

According to Sims, it is the best time to be a journalist.

Pawan Agarwal, Managing Director of DB Corp Ltd asked Sims about the future of journalism. Sims replied that there should be legislation supported by all parties including the government, opposition, independent, as well as media.

“Laws of India will protect the journalism,” Sims said.

Further, speaker Emma McDonald, Senior Policy Adviser at Minderoo Foundation, said it was “tense and stressful” while dealing with Facebook and Google while she was working with the Australian Government. However, because of the legislations, positive changes have happened in the Australian media industry.

Peter Lewis, Director at The Australia Institute said that with the help of the News Media Bargaining Code, the media houses in Australia have ‘good’ quality of articles and hiring spree in media companies.

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