On 26 July 2019, the government released the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s (ACCC) Digital Platforms Inquiry final report. The government undertook a 12 week public consultation process to better understand stakeholder views on ACCC’s 23 wide-ranging recommendations and findings and inform its response.
The government’s response to the Digital Platforms Inquiry outlines a roadmap for a program of work and series of reforms to promote competition, enhance consumer protection and support a sustainable Australian media landscape in the digital age. In the response the government commits to:
- establishing a special unit in the ACCC to monitor and report on the state of competition and consumer protection in digital platform markets, take enforcement action as necessary, and undertake inquiries as directed by the Treasurer, starting with the supply of online advertising and ad-tech services
- addressing bargaining power concerns between digital platforms and media businesses by tasking the ACCC to facilitate the development of a voluntary code of conduct
- commencing a staged process to reform media regulation towards an end state of a platform-neutral regulatory framework covering both online and offline delivery of media content to Australian consumers
- ensuring privacy settings empower consumers, protect their data and best serve the Australian economy by building on our commitment to increase penalties and introduce a binding online privacy code announced in the 2019–20 Budget, through further strengthening of Privacy Act protections, subject to consultation and design of specific measures as well as conducting a review of the Privacy Act.