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Morrison and Murdoch taking it all down

By Jon Chesterson

Australians have benefitted profoundly for nearly three decades, as has the rest of the world from the internet – freedom of information, knowledge and choice to communicate and share, which strikes at the heart of the human condition and the founding egalitarian principles of the web.

But Morrison and the Liberals with guzzling greed and the architecture of Murdoch and News Corp want to change all that for profit and power in the hands of the elite and super wealthy few – to control these golden ribbons of information… just links.

Astonishingly they propose to charge billions posting a link pointing people to the source of that information – I mean fuck, what a racket, something so simple, no product here other than spreading the news wider; providing a vehicle free of charge for something the seller would normally pay for. Like charging me if I offered you a free lift to the supermarket to get your groceries! The supermarket gets its money anyway, you get your groceries and I am hopefully not too much out of pocket for facilitating the engagement. Morrison and Murdoch want to denigrate and capitalise it, make money out of it, turn into a scheme, a scam. That money will only go to the biggest of the media and entertainment corporations like News Corp, Seven and Nine Networks who are already ripping a hole out of our pockets, fleecing our minds, our reality and choices with lies, sensationalism, fake news, advertising and propaganda under this fake code and legislation. It’s extortion.

Meanwhile, the Australian public are calculated collateral damage as the deal is flattened out and forced through. Facebook are the scapegoat not the bully here. It takes one to accuse another and make the mud stick to their victim, as that’s what bullies do, and this one does it with a smirk on his face and shit in his pants.

This damages the web, the social contract that has existed between countless millions for nearly three decades. The reason authentic media and independent journalism are struggling to survive is because the world has changed, we have technology that puts power, access and choice in everybody’s hands and we have failed to come up with a new business model to ensure those who provide it can earn a living. The big players are doing very well and will make even more money, but most independent and smaller news media agencies will continue to struggle as they are forced to scramble at the crumbs from the golden table. Morrison’s model does nothing to change that. It targets the wrong audience, misrepresents the real problem, and seeks to capitalise politically and economically from it. It’s all lies, smoke and mirrors.

And because Morrison is PM, he has the power to create and use bad legislation to execute this tyranny. And yet again he uses lies to conceal the real goal and mission as he and his insidious band of thugs have done countless times before.

 

Image from Pesky Public Creativity

 

No more pesky facts on Facebook, no more facts to put before the general public, no more facts to access or share. He doesn’t want us to have facts because if the truth were known he’d have no chance of ever forming a government again. The stakes are extraordinarily high just as they were for Trump and no doubt Putin who has actually got exactly what he wants and has had it for a long time.

Morrison aims to take it all down and narrow the field for his little band of followers and believers – the Liberals under the reckless banner of neoliberalism, now euphemism for fraudulent ungovernable capitalism. Not less government but more, far, far more. Just when you thought you were traveling north into the promised land, you one day discover all along it was south deeper and deeper into the wastelands of obscurity and starvation.

FACT

It’s not just Google who says paying for links and snippets damages the web.

Many others have raised concerns that paying for links and snippets would undermine the fundamentals of the free and open web. This includes:

The Business Council of Australia said:

“… the requirement for digital platforms to pay for providing a link to another website runs counter to one of the fundamental tenets of the internet: the ability to link freely between content. The ability to freely make these connections has underpinned the creativity and sharing of knowledge enabled by the internet. This legislation undercuts this fundamental principle that has, for decades, enabled the internet to deliver real benefits to all Australians.”

Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web, said the law “risks breaching a fundamental principle of the web by requiring payment for linking between certain content online.”

Scott Farquhar, co-founder of Australian tech company Atlassian, told The Australian on January 15: “The precedent of charging for links and snippets is a fundamental threat to the open internet, not just Google.”

Vint Cerf, chief internet evangelist at Google, who’s also regarded as one of the ‘fathers of the internet’ said:

“In its current state [the bill] represents a fundamental challenge to the free and open Internet, to the functioning of the country’s digital economy, and to Australia’s economic future…”

Many more submissions made to the Senate Committee and previously to the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission raise similar concerns.

Source: 8 Facts about Google and the News Media Bargaining Code, published Jan 22, 2021.

Morrison and the Liberals have ignored all of this, as usual, they have their eyes on a far bigger prize all for themselves and so far, it’s working out for them – The truth is hidden behind closed doors and secret passages, in the labyrinth and privileged halls of political corruption, abuse and power, the law stackers and the IPA. The rest of us in Australia are and have become increasingly collateral damage as will others across the world if governments of similar persuasion and construction follow his lead, thinking they are solving the problem of global inequity, when all they are doing is getting a leg over Facebook, robbing one giant Peter to pay another giant Paul.

 

Image via News from Facebook

 

The rest of the world do not understand what is going down here in the land of Aus and it is not just internet, FB, access to news; it is honesty, truth, civil liberties, equity, fairness, égalité, social justice and the foundations of democracy itself. The rest of us, the common folk, the ‘battlers’ already forgetting what money (real news and reality) looks and feels like as we vent our misguided anger on Facebook.

There is more to living than watching Morrison crap on and on every day on ABC News, press conferences and announcements; taking his word for what and who we should be angry with. And all the time, every time it should have been him.

Morrison shouts, everybody jumps and down we all go.

Just ask that bastard Murdoch!

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19 comments

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  1. John OCallaghan

    I was going to share this exellent article on Twitter but i was banned for life a year ago for posting anti establishment \ Non violent non racist tweets\ anti Govt opinions…… and now i cant post this article on Facebook either.
    Welcome to Facism101 and the sounds of silence!

  2. Michael Taylor

    Fortunately, John, we can share it on Facebook. If you see it in any Facebook groups we’ve shared it, you can freely share it from there by clicking on the ‘Share’ arrow below the post.

    The article will eventually be shared by us on about three dozen political Facebook groups, so the chances of stumbling upon are good.

    There’s no other way, sadly.

  3. Matters Not

    So here we have numerous descriptors such as – Australian public, everybody’s hands, audience, all Australians, rest of us, the common folk, the battlers, etc but NOWHERE does the word CITIZEN appear. You know (or perhaps not) that it is the CITIZEN who’s at the heart of this (and other) DEMOCRACIES.

    It’s the legal descriptor that allows you to vote. It’s the concept of citizenship (not taxpayer) that levels the playing field because ALL citizens are equal – all equally entitled to vote. Not so with taxpayer. Not so with foreigners (visitors or residents) such as Murdoch et al.

    The Melbourne Declaration on Educational Goals for Young Australians spoke of active and informed citizens but clearly among the adult citizens (the supposed role models) the message fell on deaf ears. But for most it matters not!

    Michael West’s latest video expresses similar sentiments to those voiced above. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ww6LmNLajAg

  4. Clare De Mayo

    excellent. Clearly and accurately stated. And I can cut and paste

  5. Neilw

    I feel sorry for Morrison’s daughters. Imagine looking on that pile of scum as your father.

  6. Jon chesterson

    Matters Not – I considered going with citizen because it is more operationally definable, but as you say many loose terms there that it probably doesn’t make much difference to key points and inferences of the article. I also sense citizen has a political, bland and negative connotation, perhaps derived from George Orwell’s 1984 and numerous science fantasy novels dealing with oppressed and repressed future societies; a little like the communist connotation that goes with comrade. To me, it feels too close to the notion of conformity, and then there is commoner, with its social class discount. Arguably citizen might cloud the theme and message. But you are right, it fits here. Personally I prefer the phrase public interest. Everyone I think has a common sense of what that is meant to mean.

    John and others – if you find any AIM Network articles you want to share, which some of us are posting in numerous FB groups. You can easily share them the usual way from the FB group they have been posted to, because they are already behind the wall. As Michael says they are duplicates sourced from the AIM Network FB page, which although blank to public because of the FB block, are providing the source for their appearances elsewhere.

    It occurred to me a ‘Friends of the AIM Network’ (public) Group linked to the original might be a good addition to our armoury presently to spread the news further, which all here could join and then share effortlessly in amidst the drought and beyond when resolved, without having to hunt for an enlightened group – Now there’s a thought Michael – Why don’t we set one up?

    In the meantime, you can find numerous AIM articles shared by Michael on ‘Friends of the Guardian Australia’, both I and Michael are administrators – https://www.facebook.com/groups/FriendsGuardianAus/. FB Pages and Groups are different, members have more opportunity to participate, especially if a page is blank under the existing FB edict.

  7. John OCallaghan

    A thank you to Michael and Jon for the mail ..re…Facebook!

  8. Jon chesterson

    So share if you can, and those who do use FB join a group where AIM Network articles get posted, every share gets the news out there. I feel daunted by the prospect that come next election end of the year, we will be battling a plethora of News Corp, Sky News, Seven and Nine paid for propaganda, bias, lies and fake news (pay back for services rendered) aided by Google – Since I believe that is the Liberal, corporate IPA and Morrison’s intention – To wrap up his or the Liberal’s re-election by ensuring a diminishing and ill-informed or misinformed electorate, feeding their fears and prejudices.They can’t afford to lose and it is going to live in the shadows of the Trump debacle, of course Morrison will want to avoid the likes of Trump’s rhetoric, but the end game and underlying motives, grab for power will be the same.

    Australia cannot afford another term of Liberals. I am convinced the current events have been engineered for this purpose. FB need to be reigned in somewhat but they are not the enemy. Look how much our communities rely on their platform, practically and arguably more than our own government.

  9. Jon chesterson

    John – I’ll keep a look out for a membership request if you chose to join, there are a couple of simple questions you will have absolutely no problem with as we screen for fake profiles, solicitous requests to join and trolls. It is an inclusive group nevertheless and not just limited to the Guardian friendly establishment 😛

  10. Michael Taylor

    It’s a pity that only the admin on The AIMN’s Facebook page can see the posts. We have over 22,200 followers on the page, so that’s a fair bit of traffic we’re missing out on.

    In the morning I’ll do a bit of experimenting to see if I can work out a way that people can share an article to Facebook direct from this site.

  11. Alpo

    Exactly!…. This is Murdoch using ScuMo to lift his failing business model, and it’s ScuMo using Murdoch to lift his failing political model…

    Failure helping failure…. what could possibly go wrong for the People of Australia?

  12. Miriam English

    Great post, Jon.

    I’ve been trying to explain to a lot of people exactly what you said. Most people seem to react to the immediate problem of not being able to post stuff on facebook. They blame facebook instead of thinking about the cause and investigating a little. It is disappointing to see how easily Morrison can herd people. Of course, he’s not the mastermind here — he’s far too stupid. Creepy Murdoch is pretty obviously the monster who came up with this. He gets to make more money and protect his pet government to do his bidding.

  13. Andrew J. Smith

    Good article though I would not overestimate the power of the Australian govt., even with support of NewsCorp etc vis a vis Facebook and Google; the global reporting of this issue outside of Australia has been peripheral and fleeting. One would suggest the LNP government and NewsCorp etc. strategy has had limited success with much potential for blow back (as they desperately blame Facebook…).

    Sceptical of this being framed as a win for the LNP govt. and NewsCorp etc. when Facebook did not blink in blocking news sites while being central to LNP and/or MP messaging*, using NewsCorp content especially, targeting middle aged and older in regions; still central to LNP message delivery (Labor too, but young ppl been ditching F’book for years).

    *MPs and govt. parties in Poland, Hungary, Russia, Turkey etc. are behaving similarly i.e. aggressively, with consolidated ‘state’ media supporting governments, by applying constraints and/or setting up ‘native’ closed social media platforms like Facebook (but are struggling), because in some cases they complain that Facebook censors (white) Christian Conservative Nationalists and (some) ‘fake news’….. while misleading youth, empowering minorities etc.

    Facebook could make this a PR coup by reinstating links to outlets which are not NewsCorp, 9F and 7West, especially helping and promoting niche, independent and regional media; could turn media upside down and really challenge legacy media, for once.

    Google potential removal of links, or not, suggests much digital illiteracy amongst media, LNP and decision makers who focus upon content and paid ads (that are problematic for NewsCorp etc.) while ignoring sole traders, small biz and SMEs (including media outlets) who have invested in SEO search engine optimisation to be visible in trusted ‘organic’ search results; requires good reciprocal ‘white hat’ links. If there is any suggestion that the LNP caused Google to drop links, or anything compromising small biz etc. the LNP will have hell to pay with one their main constituencies…..

    Further, Google News Showcase is not exclusive to Australia nor an outcome of the government’s recent strategy on behalf of media but had been globally planned in 2020; the large media outlets will receive some tens of $millions versus their ambit claims of $1.5billion plus.

    While government and media strategy on Facebook and Google is framed as supporting quality and/or regional Australian journalism, one still views it as an attempted shake down that has been resisted. Crikey, which is directly affected, has reported well in presenting both an expert and balanced view that does not support NewsCorp/LNP approach, and also challenges the idea that this has been a win for media and the LNP; me thinks the LNP govt. have just created another mess to spin their way out of…… due to their servitude to Murdoch.

  14. Kerri

    And most importantly, limiting access on the internet stops all those undeserving poor people that god and Murdoch doesn’t like from ever believing they could do better in life. Let the serf stay ignorant and in their place.
    Curse their miserable, greedy selfish arrogant hides!
    Murdoch and Morrison I mean!

  15. Deidre Zanker

    Where do we find our “Joe Bidon”?
    In a way this is worse than Trump, as he was openly making his plans public.
    Murdoch has lost his grip on the US and will now concentrate all his vindictiveness on us through Morriscum and his fascist govt.
    The LNP have held onto power with lies and manipulation, our Fed govt has been taken over by Morriscum’s “prayer group” from Hellsong.
    Democracy is precious and hard to hold onto.
    I fear we are losing ours.

  16. Henry Rodrigues

    Will Australians still support this lying scumbag that we have as PM ? He says he didn’t know about the rape allegations until last Friday. Can any leader apart from Trump, anywhere in the world lie as much as this SOB. This country needs to hang its collective head in shame if it allows this bastard and his corrupt government to win another election. Howard and Abbott were the standards we abhorred until this bastard cheated and manoeuvred his way into the Lodge. As always, he then uses his wife and daughters to cover his arse. And as usual Murdoch and Stokes and Costello will ride to his rescue.
    This whole kerfuffle with the tech companies is just a diversionary tactic considering Scummo knew that the rape allegation was going to blowup, sooner or later. He hid it before the last elections and now he’s desperately trying to focus the voters mind on anything else but that. Of course Murdoch has a lot to gain too, its a case of one bastard scratching the other’s backside.

  17. OnceWasALiberal

    Kerri,
    I love the way you seem to have worked a little of the pentecostal prosperity religion belief into your comment.

  18. Jon chesterson

    PESKY FACTS

    ‘The general public just don’t know that this has been happening for years!’

    They haven’t in the past and they still don’t which is astonishing given the independent press coverage, but it’s not had any penetration due to the weakness of mainstream media diversity and ownership – Predominantly 80% owned by Murdoch, and we all know the lies, fake news he puts out and his extreme partisan leanings and interests. He is a sociopath.

    But people read it, I see them every day on the train with the Australian or Telegraph tucked under their arm, lying around gratuitously in the coffee shops and houses. And although it took News Corp a long time to adjust to the internet and technology change, the younger generation’s use of preferred channel/s – smart phones, apps, new social platforms and internet. He has fired up all his paywalls, got Google to prioritise his papers in search engines and feeds, and now gets paid for links (double dipping). And he will be the main beneficiary of Morrison’s fake Media Bargaining code and legislation, plus the other big ruthless profit making giants. Little surprise that this results in a deluded right wing voice across Australia, a voice that trades in opinion not fact, prejudice not tolerance, lies not truth and honesty, sensationalism and sales not authentic journalism, reporting and critique.

    So we are a nation of ill equipped and ill informed liberals, politically disinterested and/or blind indifferent, who accept much of what is presented to them by Morrison, where even the ABC has become Morrison’s dog and slave announcement mouthpiece and diatribe, given the gross conflict of interest in the master who attacks and funds them on our behalf, but not in our (public) interests.

    If only people were willing to critically think, reflect, be more discerning of their news sources, become more aware of the catalogue of government abuses and corruption, challenge political lies prejudice and abuse, pay more attention to the moral, social and ethical essentials that underpin healthy society and good government – Take an interest.

    Democracy doesn’t just happen by chance, it has to be defended and protected. Instead it is under attack by the Liberal and Nationals, Morrison and Murdoch are taking it down. Australians need to think more before they vote or soon enough there will be nothing to vote for and we will lose it.

  19. Gangstas Paradise

    For those who still think Guardian Australia any different from the Murdoch’s News Corpse then think again.

    GA went all in with the Morrison govt & the Murdoch’s to extort Google and now having bottom their slice of the $s are going full tilt with Morrison & Murdoch against Face Book.

    Alphabet …… owner of Google ….. being one of the worlds top 20 corporations can afford to pay, but can you afford to pay GA, instead of trusted journalism that is not sitting at the same table as the Murdoch’s and Morrison.

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