Facebook to let Aussies post links to news sites again

Facebook and the Australian government struck a deal to let people post links to Australian news websites again. Facebook had earlier blocked links to Aussie sites following passage of a law that would force Facebook to pay those sites.

Australian Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg had told him the ban would end "in the coming days", after the pair had talks.

Mr Frydenberg said amendments would be made to the law.

"Facebook has re-friended Australia," he told reporters in Canberra on Tuesday.

Facebook must be destroyed, yes, but forcing it to give money to Australian newspapers accomplishes nothing but making Rupert Murdoch richer. There is no way such a law could be in the true interest of publishers or the public, not least because it could eventually be extended to any site that publishes links to things. The Australian government's position was so weak (it was immediately obvious that the fees paid to publishers would not be more valuable than the traffic Facebook referred to the publishers) that we now we have a worst-case scenario: an effort to skim Facebook for the benefit of private interests appears to have failed, resulting in Facebook getting to "amend" a nation's laws while making action in the public's genuine interest less likely.

Meanwhile, the quality of journalism on the matter is absurdly low. Countless takes from last week have already aged terribly.