On Tuesday, June 11th, David Chavern, President & CEO of the News Media Alliance, testified before the House Judiciary Subcommittee Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law to advocate for The Journalism Competition and Preservation Act (H.R. 2054).
The Journalism Competition and Preservation Act aims to provide a safe harbor from antitrust laws to allow news publishers to collectively negotiate with tech companies like Google and Facebook.
According to Chavern’s testimony, “ 93% of Americans get at least some of their news online.” However, he continued:
“The result of the tech platforms’ regulation of the news industry has been to siphon revenue away from news organizations. This trend is clear if you compare the growth in Google’s total advertising revenue to the decline in the newspaper industry’s ad revenue. In 2004, Google’s US revenue (which came overwhelmingly from digital advertising) was $2.1 billion, while the newspaper industry accounted for $48 billion of advertising revenue. In 2017, in contrast, Google’s US revenue had increased over twenty-five times to $52.4 billion, while the newspaper industry’s ad revenue had fallen 65% to $16.4 billion.”
Read David’s full testimony here.
The News Media Alliance’s ultimate goal is to “work with online platforms to give Americans the best news content and experience possible” while also “return[ing] value to the great and important journalists who create the news content on which we all depend.”
In addition to Chavern, other witnesses included: Mr. Gene Kimmelman, President, Public Knowledge; Ms. Sally Hubbard, Director of Enforcement Strategy, Open Markets Institute; Mr. Matthew Schruers, Vice President, Law and Policy, Computer and Communications Industry Association; Mr. David Pitofsky, General Counsel, News Corp; and Mr. Kevin Riley, Editor, Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The Senate announced its version of the bill (S. 1700) on June 4 and is co-sponsored by U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA) and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN).
Watch the full hearing here.