Australia is on track to pass legislation that will require tech companies to pay settle fees for content used in search results or news feeds with local newspapers and broadcasters.
Google recently announced that if the state continues along this trajectory that would require it and Facebook to pay media companies for the right to use their content, it would block its search engine in Australia.
In the same way that 'hoovering' became a synonym for vacuuming and 'Breville' became the word for a toasted sandwich, Google's search engine has become a verb for search engine practicality. But with the current tensions building between Google and Australia's news providers challenging the country's very availability for Google search, people now have to wonder what alternatives exist.
Google claims that it will no longer be able to deliver Google Search in Australia if the government's planned News Media Negotiation Code goes through. And while it is impossible to estimate the exact amount of disruption that blocking the near-ubiquitous service will have, one thing is certain: for all your web query needs, you will have to find a new service.
This puts businesses in great worry in Australia. Here is how you can figure everything out and grow your business with the best seo tools for your business.
Why Google threatens to pull over its search engine in Australia?
As part of a three-year, $1.3 billion drive to help publishers, Google's threat to restrict its services in Australia came just hours after the Internet giant signed a content-payment agreement with some French news publishers.
This shocking revelation of Google on news is linked to the News Media Bargaining Code, a mandatory code of conduct established by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to fix the imbalances in the bargaining power of Australian news media companies and digital channels, such as Google and Facebook.
In July 2020, the ACCC published a draft code enabling news media organizations to bargain with companies such as Google and Facebook individually or collectively for payment for the inclusion of news on their services.
The Australian government has so far indicated that the code would only apply to Google and Facebook, and other businesses could be included if they have been found to have a major bargaining power gap with the Australian news media companies.
This implies that Google and Facebook, including Facebook News Feed, Instagram, Facebook News Tab, Google Search, Google News and Google Discover, would have to pay for news websites whose links show up on their platforms. “These services have been selected on the basis that they display Australian news, without typically offering revenue-sharing arrangements to all news media businesses that produce this content,” the draft code says.
What is Google’s stand on this?
Google says that while it supports the idea that it is important to support the financial future of publishers, the way the government seeks to accomplish this aim will break the way Google search operates.
The tech giant has maintained that code remains "unworkable" because it notes that every search engine is central to the ability to freely connect between websites. Google would have to compensate publishers of those news media outlets if the code is enforced so that their links turn up as search results.
Google has also said that the code allows the organization to give special care to news publishers, meaning a 14-day notice period informing them of algorithm updates and such 'internal activities.' "Even if we were able to comply, that would delay important updates for our users and provide news publishers with special treatment in a way that would disadvantage everyone else," Google said.
Therefore, Google has said that it would stop making Google Search available in Australia if the code were to become law.
Now the companies, startups and small businesses are in trouble state in Australia. You can find the best website platform for your small business other than Google with a little research and effort.
What happens if Google stops its services in Australia?
In Australia, more than nine in 10 web searches are typed into a Google search bar. Google's search engine is omnipresent in digital gadgets, whether on a smartphone, desktop, tablet or television, dictated to a smart speaker or demanded from the linked dashboard of a vehicle.
"Google" has become more of a verb for many individuals than a brand.
But, to protest against legislation that would see it pay Australian news outlets for the reports it uses, the trillion-dollar tech giant threatens to remove its search service from Australia.
And internet users have begun to wonder what the "worst-case scenario" would mean to them every day.
Would their Google Docs still be open to them? Is Gmail going to work? And where will they go for news, facts, trivia responses, goods, services and up-to-the-minute Bernie Sanders memes to scour the world wide web?
According to Statista, 93 per cent of Australians turned to Google for their web searches in November last year, making it a dominant force for finding things online. The company’s nearest rivals, Bing and Yahoo, were used by only 18 and 17 per cent of Australians, followed by DuckDuckGo and Search.com. And it is this web monopoly that could create a tricky situation for internet users in Australia.
In a Senate Committee hearing into the proposed media negotiating code, Google Australia managing director Mel Silva said the company objected so strongly to its requirements that it would stop Australians from using Google search if it went forward.
“If the code becomes law, Google would have no real choice but to stop providing Search in Australia,” she said. "This is the worst-case scenario and the last thing that we want to do."
No suggestion has been made that the withdrawal of Google from Australia would include other services it provides, such as Gmail, Google Photos or Google Drive.
But Dr Belinda Barnet, senior lecturer on social media at Swinburne University, warns that only removing Google Search will cause millions of web users immediate disruption and likely anger.
"Because Google is the gateway to the internet for Australians right now, there will be a huge initial impact on Australians using the internet," she says. It will have an effect on grandma sitting down to google a ginger tea recipe, as well as influencing a pandemic on Australians. And Google is prepared to put that on the line.'
Adam Boote, the digital and growth director of Localsearch, says that small businesses will also have to respond quickly to ensure that they can still be identified. "If Google turns their search engine off, companies will be required to start their marketing from scratch," he says. "This is a major loss in the climate we are currently experiencing during a global pandemic."
Google itself, despite earning $4.3 billion in 2019, would also have to give up billions of dollars in income from Australia. But the outcome of Google's search withdrawal in Australia might not be doom and gloom.
Barnet says it could be a good time for "Australians to learn how to use a Google alternative, such as Bing or DuckDuckGo," since they provide services that were not offered by the search chief.
For example, DuckDuckGo does not use web trackers and promises to protect the privacy of users, while other search engines such as Ecosia and Ekoru support environmental initiatives with the advertisement revenue they generate.
Some search engines often give users the ability to configure the outcomes they obtain, how many outcomes per page are shown, and how they appear. Some show less or more apparent supported connections, have greater control over fonts and can be installed in a Safari, Chrome, Firefox or Edge browser as an extension so that the selection becomes automatic.
"There may be an upside after that initial moment of panic," Barnet says. "And there could be a couple of good things coming from it in the long term."
Top alternatives to Google in Australia
The best alternative search engines to Google in Australia are:
The Bing search engines Australia was officially launched by Microsoft in 2009, although it existed previously under other names such as MSN Search and Live Search. The search engine has continued to see its market share rise since branding itself under the new name, but it's still far behind Google. Bing had a little more than 3.5 percent market share in Australia at the beginning of 2019, with an extra 0.72 percent search volume for MSN Australia.
Bing drives Yahoo Quest as well. Although Yahoo is not very popular as a search engine in Australia (only 0.52 percent market share), this alliance has helped Bing grow substantially in other countries, particularly in the US. On the other hand, Google has replaced Bing as the default search engine for Apple, which is a big set back for them.
DuckDuckGo search engine Australia launched ten years ago, is relatively new among the top search engines. In Australia, it currently has a market share of 0.54 percent, putting it ahead of Yahoo (0.52 percent) and Baidu (0.08 percent ).
DuckDuckGo is popular among users concerned with privacy because it does not record user data or monitor user activity. For regular searches, it's quite good but still falls short of challenging the popularity of Google or Bing.
Yahoo was founded in 1994 and was previously considered a pioneer in terms of web search market share. While it is still Australia's 4th most used search engine, its relevance has been diminishing, and Google has lost a lot of ground. Since 2009, Yahoo's quest has mostly been driven by Bing. In Australia, it currently has a 0.52 percent market share.
Yahoo originally did not crawl or index web pages but preferred to submit queries through Inktomi and Google. With Yahoo branding, it presented the search results but depended on other providers. In 204, Yahoo developed its original web-crawler technology, combining the capacity of multiple previously acquired search engines. Seven West Media-owned 50 percent of Yahoo Australia until March 2018 (also known as Yahoo7).
Ecosia is a solar-powered search engine that uses its ad revenues to plant trees around the world, dedicated to a particular form of social good. On average, it says that one tree is equal to every 45 searches, and it keeps track of how many searches you have done to make you feel good about it.
Like Yahoo, Bing is powered by Ecosia, but without much curation, what you get is a list of matching links. It has not attempted to extract an address, reviews or any pictures of the cafe, and it merely sends you to Google or Bing with a Maps button. On COVID data, displaying Australian news stories as well as the official NSW and Victorian government sites, it was better than Yahoo.
No conversions; you'll want to bookmark the important pages. It fixed the misspelling but did not provide definitions, and my name provided a mix of people. There are pictures and news straight from Bing, which is good. Overall, to get some trees planted, you give up convenience versus Bing.
Search engines operated back in the old days by having people curate content rather than spidering the web and caching lots of content. A combination of curation with a mathematical model that generates search results that are computational facts is used by Wolfram Alpha.
For example, instead of getting a list of websites about our country, if I look up "Australia," I get a bunch of data about Australia; things as landmass, population and demographic information.
Although Google's search results are often considered the best, individuals are worried that the search giant will track them. Start Page pays Google to access its findings but excludes all trackers from it.
So, without making your search history being a tool to track you and target you with ads, you get great search results. And, the "Anonymous View" function also includes it. You can visit the website with complete privacy if you click on a search result. Sire will never realize that you've been there before. Next to any search result, you'll find the function.
Internet does not stop at Google. The dependency of people on Google for everything will get a new outlook with other best alternatives to Google search that can prove to be at the standard of Google.