Friday, 26 July 2019 11:10

Govt to react to ACCC digital platforms report by year-end Featured

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Josh Frydenberg: "The ACCC’s final report makes clear that digital platforms are an important innovation that have fundamentally changed the way that media content is produced, distributed and consumed." Josh Frydenberg: "The ACCC’s final report makes clear that digital platforms are an important innovation that have fundamentally changed the way that media content is produced, distributed and consumed." Courtesy: YouTube

The Federal Government has released the final report of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's digital platforms inquiry, which was handed to it a month ago, but has given no indication of how it would react to the recommendations, saying only that it would finalise its response by the end of the year.

"The precise form of the reforms and a detailed government response to the report’s recommendations will be informed by a public consultation process, led by Treasury and involving the Department of Communications and the Arts as well as the Attorney-General’s Department," Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said in a statement on Friday.

"The consultation process will run for 12 weeks and will enable all interested stakeholders to provide feedback on the report and its implementation.

"Following these consultations, the Government intends to finalise its response to the report by the end of the year."

Frydenberg said: "In their report, the ACCC has set out 23 recommendations to respond to the substantial market power that has arisen through the growth of digital platforms, their impact on competition in media and advertising markets and implications for news media businesses, advertisers and consumers."

He said the government recognised that, since news and journalism was an important public good, there was a need for reform "to better protect consumers, improve transparency, recognise power imbalances and ensure that substantial market power is not used to lessen competition in media and advertising services markets".

Frydenberg said the government had also accepted that there was a need to develop a harmonised media regulatory framework.

The ACCC released the preliminary version of the report in December last year.

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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