The U.S. Federal Trade Commission needs new powers to protect the struggling U.S. local news industry from unfair competition from large technology companies, a senior U.S. lawmaker said.
Maria Cantwell, the top Democrat on the Senate Commerce Committee, said in a report released Tuesday that “local news has been hijacked by a few large news aggregation platforms, most notably Google and Facebook, which have become the dominant players in online advertising.”
The report added the “trillion-dollar companies scrape local news content and data for their own sites and leverage their market dominance to force local news to accept little to nothing for their intellectual property.”
Google scrapes the web to get headlines and story snippets, while Facebook features content posted by publishers or users and “receives billions in profits from the news content created by others,” the report said.
The chief executives of Facebook FB.O Twitter TWTR.N and Alphabet-owned Google GOOGL.O will testify Wednesday at a Senate Commerce Committee hearing that is expected to discuss their impact on local journalism.