CNN Quits Facebook in Australia Citing Defamation Risk from Public Comments on Posts

CNN cited a court ruling that says publishers are liable for defamation in public comments and Facebook’s refusal to disable comments in posts.

CNN Quits Facebook in Australia Citing Defamation Risk from Public Comments on Posts

Facebook has several features available for publishers and other users to restrict who can comment

Highlights
  • Facebook declined a request to help CNN and other publishers
  • CNN would continue to publish content on its own platforms in Australia
  • Social media is a central channel for distributing content in Australia

CNN said it has stopped posting articles on Australian Facebook pages, citing a court ruling that publishers are liable for defamation in public comments and the social media firm's refusal to help it disable comments in the country. The move makes CNN, which is owned by AT&T, the first major news organisation to pull its Australian Facebook presence since the country's high court ruled this month that publishers were legally responsible for comments posted below stories - even if the stories themselves were not defamatory.

CNN does not feature prominently in Australian media consumption, but the decision could have reverberations across the industry if other outlets followed suit.

Facebook declined a request to help CNN and other publishers disable public comments in the country following the ruling, CNN said.

"We are disappointed that Facebook, once again, has failed to ensure its platform is a place for credible journalism and productive dialogue around current events among its users," a CNN spokeswoman said in a statement.

She added that CNN would continue to publish content on its own platforms in Australia.

A Facebook spokesperson said recent court decisions had shown the need for reform in Australian defamation law and the company looked forward to "greater clarity and certainty in this area".

"While it's not our place to provide legal guidance to CNN, we have provided them with the latest information on tools we make available to help publishers manage comments," the spokesperson said.

Facebook says it has several features available for publishers and other users to restrict who can comment on posts. It and CNN did not give details of the discussions that led to CNN's decision.

Social media is a central channel for distributing content in Australia, with about two-thirds of the country's 25 million population on Facebook, according to industry figures. About a third of the country's population used Facebook to source news in 2021, a University of Canberra report said.

© Thomson Reuters 2021


This week on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast, we discuss the Surface Pro 8, Go 3, Duo 2, and Laptop Studio — as Microsoft sets a vision for Windows 11 hardware. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
Comments

For the latest tech news and reviews, follow Gadgets 360 on Twitter, Facebook, and Google News. For the latest videos on gadgets and tech, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

Further reading: Facebook, CNN, Australian Facebook
Samsung Galaxy F42 5G With Triple Rear Cameras, 90Hz Display Launched in India: Price, Specifications
OnePlus Buds Z2 TWS Earphones Specifications Surface Online, Tipped to Get Active Noise Cancellation, Dolby Atmos
Share on Facebook Tweet Snapchat Share Reddit Comment
 
 

Advertisement

Advertisement

© Copyright Red Pixels Ventures Limited 2022. All rights reserved.