News Alliance Says Google And Facebook Supporting Fake News

The news industry has been hit with declining print readership and a loss of advertising revenue as it has moved online. An alliance of approximately 2,000 news/media organizations says Google and Facebook’s dominance in online advertising and traffic is supporting fake news and creating an unsustainable future for journalism.

According to eMarketer, Google and Facebook combined will account for 60% of the U.S. digital advertising market in 2017. The news outlets say they want stronger protections for intellectual property, more support for subscription models, and a bigger share of the online advertising market.

The News Media Alliance, which represents nearly 2,000 news organizations in the United States and Canada, believes that because of the two companies’ dominance, news publishers are forced to “surrender their content and play by their rules on how news and information is displayed, prioritized and monetized.” This often puts media publishers in head-to-head competition with fake news.

These rules have commoditized the news and given rise to fake news, which often cannot be differentiated from real news. – News Alliance Press Release

The biggest challenge facing the news alliance is that it would need an exemption from antitrust law to negotiate as a group. However, if permitted to open discussions with Google and Facebook, the alliance could push for stronger intellectual-property protection, better support for their subscription models, and a fairer share of ad revenue and customer data. Many believe that doing so could build a more sustainable future for the news business.

Facebook says the company is working to cut down on fake news, fake reviews, and click-bait headlines, in favor of “quality journalism.”