Facebook has banned news media groups and emergency services from sharing and viewing news.
The ban came as the social media outlet refused to comply with a regulatory push that would force the giant to share revenue with media outlets.
For the moment Neos Kosmos has slipped through the cracks and has yet to be affected by the ban, however we urge our readers to visit us directly, search for us and subscribe to our daily newsletter (in Greek and English). You can also follow us on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and subscribe to our digital newspaper.
The ban has affected major news organisations such as News Crop and Nine, even wiping out local community affiliates around Australia but also banning a number of other groups including Victoria Police, the Bureau of Meteorology, RACQ, Bowel Cancer Australia, The Kids’ Cancer Project, Queensland Rugby League, Western Australia’s Department of Fire and Emergency Services and others. In an embarrassing mistake, Facebook even banned its own page on Facebook.
By noon today, Neos Kosmos was one of a handful of media groups yet to be banned, however The Greek Herald, Greek City Times and Kosmos in New South Wales are all unable to post or have their content viewed on Facebook.
Even the Facebook pages of websites abroad such as the Pappas Post and Greek Reporter could not be viewed by Australian readers.
PRONIA, the Greek Orthodox Community of Melbourne and other sites belonging to Greek Australians are still operating for the moment but Fronditha Care has been scrapped.
A Facebook spokesperson said the government pages should not be hit and any inadvertently impacted pages would be fixed. “As the law does not provide clear guidance on the definition of news content, we have taken a broad definition in order to respect the law as drafted,” the spokesperson said in a statement.
Australia’s Treasurer Josh Frydenberg had a “constructive” discussion with Facebook chief Mike Zuckerberg this morning.
Australia is set to adopt legislation that would force digital companies, such as Facebook and Google, to pay for news content, something that would create a global precedent.