The Australian Government has released a new report which suggests Facebook and Google need to reveal their secretive algorithms to function in Australia. The Australian regulators had set their sights on these big tech companies for a long time and after an 18-month investigation into the impact of Google and Facebook on the country’s economy.

The report is proposed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC). If the Australian government decided to implement the proposal, would make this the toughest enforcement in the modern world.

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Asked an Algo reports from Google and Facebook

The report didn’t reveal how the tech giants will be forced to make their algorithms public. However, the report proposes a new and powerful regulator (the Digital Platforms Branch) within the ACCC, which would scrutinize the working of algorithms.

Facebook and Google Forced to Give Their Algorithms Details to ACCC
Facebook and Google Forced to Give Their Algorithms Details to ACCC

The report also discusses the risk of Facebook and Google bossing competition by commanding their algorithms to prioritize their own products over others. This new branch will pro-actively monitor these tech giants and investigate anti-competitive behaviour, as mentioned above.

For the branch to monitor the operation of Facebook and Google, they need the algorithm to understand how they work and their inner workings. The Australian government needs to grant the branch the ability to compel relevant information via a public inquiry.

How Do Officials Perceive the Report?

In a press conference in Sydney, Josh Frydenberg, the Treasurer of Australia supported the report. And according to BBC, Josh also mentioned Facebook and Google activities need to be more transparent.

Facebook is yet to release a public statement to the regulator’s report while a Google representative said that the company is willing to engage with the Australian government on their recommendations.

The report suggests 23 recommendation and creating the branch is one of them. The report also covers fake news and whether Google can automatically set its own services as defaults on Android phones and tablets.

Source – BusinessInsider


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