The Federal Government has blown a chance it had to implement a world-leading deal with digital giants Google and Facebook, backing down even before the bill for its so-called News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code was introduced into Parliament. The digital platforms will be breaking out the Dom Pérignon in Silicon Valley over the way they have clinically neutered Treasurer Josh Frydenberg.
The Australian Government has cheerfully forked out $1.2 billion of those green notes to settle a lawsuit in the robodebt case. I think it's a good moment to stop and consider whether some ministers should be told, in strict terms, to avoid taking any initiatives that involve technology.
It's beginning to look like the Federal Government should avoid anything to do with technology following the revelation on Thursday that $70 million of taxpayers' money was spent on the COVIDSafe app – and only 17 cases were detected through its use.
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