Scott Morrison raised the tactic with Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, late last night to prevent the social media company from bullying governments.

He is expected to do the same with other world leaders in the coming hours.

Scott Morrison is rallying world leaders to join Australia’s fight against the social media giant. (Alex Ellinghausen)

Key organisations including Fire and Rescue NSW, Department of Fire and Emergency Services WA, SA Health and Queensland Health all had their pages wiped until they slowly began being restored by mid-afternoon.

Scott Morrison raised the tactic with Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi. (AAP)

Mr Morrison launched a scathing attack on Facebook in the wake of the debacle, saying the company had “unfriended” Australia, calling its actions “arrogant” and “disappointing”.

“These actions will only confirm the concerns that an increasing number of countries are expressing about the behaviour of BigTech companies who think they are bigger than governments and that the rules should not apply to them.

Mark Zuckerberg Facebook bans Australian news content
Facebook CEO held talks with Treasurer Josh Frydenberg at the weekend and yesterday before it blocked Australian news content. (Getty/Facebook)

“They may be changing the world, but that doesn’t mean they run it.”

Henry Faure Walker, the deputy chairman of the UK News Media Association which advocates media companies, said Facebook’s ban in Australia showed why new laws were needed.

Facebook blocks Australian health and emergency service pages after news ban
Facebook blocks Australian health and emergency service pages after news ban on Thursday. (9News, Facebook)

He said a blanket ban on news during a global pandemic was “a classic example of a monopoly power being the schoolyard bully, trying to protect its dominant position with scant regard for the citizens and customers it supposedly serves”.

“Facebook’s actions in Australia demonstrate precisely why we need jurisdictions across the globe, including the UK, to coordinate to deliver robust regulation to create a truly level playing between the tech giants and news publishers.”

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Facebook recently struck a financial deal with publishers and news outlets in the UK by creating a Facebook News tab on its mobile app.

The licensing agreement allows Facebook to use headlines and article previews from the news outlets it penned deals with.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison speaks during Question Time in the House of Representatives on February 18, 2021 in Canberra. (Getty)

British MP Julian Knight backed the Australian Government’s move to tighten laws on tech giants.

“Australia’s democratically elected government is democratically elected. And they have the right to make laws and legislation. And it’s, it’s really disrespecting democracy to act in this fashion,” Mr Knight, who chairs a media committee, told Sky News UK.

“It is one of the most idiotic but also deeply disturbing corporate moves of our lifetimes.”

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said the timing of Facebook’s ban came as the social giant saw the passage of the proposed code through the House of Representatives yesterday – but the government had no warning.

The bill is yet to go through the Senate.



This content first appear on 9news

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