Rupert Murdoch: Facebook should pay publishers

Rupert Murdoch: Facebook should pay publishers
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Media mogul Rupert Murdoch says Facebook should pay publishers for their content.

“If Facebook wants to recognize 'trusted' publishers then it should pay those publishers a carriage fee similar to the model adopted by cable companies,” Murdoch, the owner and executive chairman of News Corp., said in a press release on Monday.

“The publishers are obviously enhancing the value and integrity of Facebook through their news and content but are not being adequately rewarded for those services,” he added.

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Murdoch said that powerful web companies like Facebook and Google were become gatekeepers for media content and needed more transparency. He said a fee structure similar to that between cable providers and stations could ease tensions between Silicon Valley and media companies.

He also slammed web companies for pushing questionable news sources.

"Facebook and Google have popularized scurrilous news sources through algorithms that are profitable for these platforms but inherently unreliable. Recognition of a problem is one step on the pathway to cure, but the remedial measures that both companies have so far proposed are inadequate, commercially, socially and journalistically," Murdoch said. 

Murdoch’s News Corp. would stand to heavily benefit from his proposed fees for content. The company's roughly $50 billion in assets include The Wall Street Journal, Dow Jones Newswires and The New York Post.

Murdoch's statements come after Facebook CEO Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergFacebook users in lawsuit say company failed to warn them of known risks before 2018 breach Social media never intended to be in the news business — but just wait till AI takes over Facebook exploring deals with media outlets for news section: report MORE announced his company would shift its algorithms to prioritize showing users content from their friends and family instead of content from news publishers. Some in media worry the move could hurt their bottom line.

Murdoch has been critical of big tech firms in the past. He and his companies have previously picked fights with Google over advertisements appearing alongside extremist and other problematic content on YouTube.

News Corp. tried its own foray into social media when it purchased Myspace for $580 million in 2005. It sold the social media site for $35 million in 2011.