Australian news media have received millions of dollars from Facebook and Google

Publishers large and small are seeing big dividends come their way one year after the passage of Australia’s News Media Bargaining Code, writes Rod Sims, the former chair of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission who initiated the Code.

In a new piece written for the Conversation (Australia) Sims says Australia’s code has successful in allowing publishers to negotiate deals with tech platforms for the use of journalistic content. In total, he estimates the total value of commercial deals to be worth more than $200 million Australian dollars per year.

Sims notes, however, that more work still needs to be done. Facebook, for example, has held out on making agreements with some news organizations.

“The Code brought far more money to new outlets than expected,” said Harry Dugmore, senior lecturer in the communications department at Australia’s University of the Sunshine Coast in a piece published by Poynter.

The piece also notes how Canadian legislation addresses some of the shortcomings of the Australian code, particularly the lack of transparency of deal terms. Under the draft Canadian Online News Act, contract terms will need to be disclosed to the government.