Australia said it will establish the world's first dedicated

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  • 26 Jul 2019 12:00 AM
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Australia to Set Up Antitrust Office to Police Facebook and Google

Australia said it will establish the world's first dedicated office within an antitrust regulator to police Facebook Inc and Google, setting a precedent for global lawmakers grappling with the US technology giants' dominance. The move outlined in a ground-breaking report tightens regulation on the technology behemoths, who have caused global governments to address concerns ranging from anti-trust issues to alleged political bias to the spread of "fake news" and hate speech. Canberra will form a special branch of the Australian Competition Consumer Commission (ACCC), the antitrust watchdog, to scrutinise how the companies used algorithms to match advertisements with viewers, giving them a stronghold on the main income generator of media operators. The new ACCC branch will be designed to take inquiries from companies with exposure to the advertising market who believe that the algorithms have been misused. A Google representative said in an email that the company would "continue to engage with the government during the consultation process on the recommendations put forward in this report". A Facebook representative was not immediately available for comment.

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