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On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee passed the Journalism Competition and Preservation Act, which has been reintroduced by Senators Amy Klobuchar and John Kennedy. The bill aims to empower digital journalism providers and news broadcasters to negotiate with online platforms for fair compensation for their news content.
It requires covered platforms to negotiate with eligible news organizations in good faith and allows non-broadcaster news publishers to seek arbitration if negotiations fail. The legislation also includes provisions to protect against discrimination and retaliation by covered platforms. As far a retaliation goes, Facebook parent-company Meta has already stated its intention to remove news from its sites, rather than pay journalists by law.
While the bill still needs to pass the full Senate and face the House, the National Association of Broadcasters has expressed support for the action, stating that it will help local media negotiate for the fair market value of their news content.
“NAB applauds the Senate Judiciary Committee for its strong bipartisan passage of the Journalism Competition and Preservation Act. For too long, local news outlets have been at the mercy of Big Tech behemoths that devalue broadcasters’ critical community-focused journalism when it is accessed online,” said NAB President Curtis LeGeyt in response to the JCPA’s passage.
“This legislation will enable local media to negotiate for the fair market value of our news content. We appreciate the leadership and hard work of Sens. Klobuchar and Kennedy to address the impact of Big Tech’s outsized market power on local journalism, he continued. We applaud Chairman Durbin, Ranking Member Grassley and the bipartisan members of the committee for supporting this important legislation.”