The News Publishers’ Association (NPA) has today received provisional authorisation from the Commerce Commission allowing it to begin a collective bargaining process with global giants Facebook and Google to seek fair payment for Kiwi journalism used on their platforms.

In November, the NPA applied to the Commerce Commission seeking permission on behalf of its members, and all other independent New Zealand-owned media organisations, to collectively bargain with Facebook and Google.

Today’s provisional authorisation allows NPA to start collective negotiations while the Commission completes its consideration of the NPA’s main application.

General Manager of the NPA, Brook Cameron, welcomed the interim authorisation allowing New Zealand’s independent news publishers to start an ‘historic and critical’ process. “This is about supporting  our independent New Zealand news publishers to keep investing in great journalism so we can protect and grow a vibrant, thriving Kiwi media sector because that is critical to a healthy democracy.”

“Submissions to the Commission on our application show the depth of concern about the risk Google and Facebook pose to our local media and support for this initiative to redress the power imbalance, and protect local journalism.  We will continue to provide information to the Commission on these important issues as it works towards completing its decision on NPA’s main application.”

“These global tech giants have built businesses of unimaginable size,1 and amassed their dominant power using ‘free press’ on their platforms – news made and paid for by media companies.”

“Facebook and Google use journalists’ content for free, pay very little tax in New Zealand2, and are understood to consume the majority of available digital advertising spend in New Zealand. Approximately only ten cents in every dollar spent on digital advertising in New Zealand goes to New Zealand news producers that invest in producing journalism and news content.3/4

In Australia, a specific “bargaining code” has been introduced by law to help support the sustainability of the Australian news media sector by addressing the bargaining power imbalances between global digital giants, such as Facebook and Google, and Australian news businesses.

There is no such legislation in New Zealand, so the NPA’s authorisation application is seeking permission from the Commerce Commission for independent New Zealand news media to be allowed to collectively bargain with Facebook and Google to try to address the same bargaining power imbalances that exist in New Zealand.  With today’s provisional authorisation NPA can start that process in advance of the conclusion of the Commission’s standard process in relation to NPA’s main application.

“We are seeking an avenue to negotiate for fair payment, in the same way that media organisations in Australia have been provided the ability to negotiate with the digital platforms.”

The application is being made on an “opt in” basis, with it open for NPA members, and other independent New Zealand owned media organisations, to choose to participate in the collective bargaining group should it be approved by the Commerce Commission. The NPA invites any independent New Zealand-owned media organisation to register their interest in joining this, currently under the provisional authorisation and pending receipt of full authorisation from the Commission, by emailing

Asset Library:

The hi-res images for publication with this story are available for download here.


  1. General Manager of the NPA, Brook Cameron.jpg
  2. NPA_Brook Cameron.jpg
  3. NPA comcom Approval.mp4

For further information:
Please contact Brook Cameron, General Manager, News Publishers’ Association on