Activists ask to protect the local US press from technology companies

Leaders of organizations in defense of press freedom on Monday asked the US Congress to approve a law that protects media locals versus big tech companies.

The bill, already in the Senate, would allow the media to come together to negotiate with companies like Alphabet, parent of Google; o Meta, owner of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp; to obtain more income from the content they distribute on the platforms.

“Big technology companies drive advertisers away from local media,” criticized the executive vice president of the US National Association of Broadcasters, April Carty-Sipp, at an event organized by the Center for Telecommunications and Regulatory Studies (Certal) in Washington.

Carty-Sipp asked legislators to approve this project before January 3, when the new Congress will be constituted as a result of the legislative elections last November.

The president of the Inter-American Press Association (SIP), Micahel Greenspon, also gave his support to this project and warned about the closure of local media in the country. “Without local media, without power oversight, corruption and human rights violations spread,” he said during his speech.

The local press in the US has suffered financially from the flight of advertisers to digital platforms, explained the IAPA president. “The paradox is that platforms use free media content to attract audiences and generate more ad revenue,” Greenspon said.

Unesco: social networks are an “existential threat” for the media

Every two weeks a local newspaper in the US closes and a third of all newspapers that existed twenty years ago will close by 2025, according to a study by Northwestern University.

With information from Efe.

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