Tag: The World/Australia

Australia to declare social media companies as publishers & make them liable for defamatory comments posted on their platforms & anonymous online trolls; legislation draft soon

Photos- PM (Grab) & STOP photo – endnowfoundation.org

By Neeraj Nanda

MELBOURNE, 28 November 2021: In a world-first Australia has decided to hold online social media giants responsible for defamatory comments posted on their platforms & anonymous online trolls. It intends to give new powers to courts in this regard. Unmasking those trolling others online will be the responsibility of the tech giants who own popular social media platforms.

In a joint media release Prime Minister Scott Morrison with Michaelia Cash Attorney-General, PM Sco Mo said, ” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the rules that exist in the real world should exist online too.

“Social media can too often be a cowards’ palace, where the anonymous can bully, harass and ruin lives without consequence,” the Prime Minister said.

“We would not accept these faceless attacks in a school, at home, in the office, or on the street. And we must not stand for it online, on our devices and in our homes.

“We cannot allow social media platforms to provide a shield for anonymous trolls to destroy reputations and lives. We cannot allow social media platforms to take no responsibility for the content on their platforms. They cannot enable it, disseminate it, and wash their hands of it. This has to stop.

“These will be some of the strongest powers to tackle online trolls in the world.

“Anonymous trolls are on notice, you will be named and held to account for what you say. Big tech companies are on notice, remove the shield of anonymity or be held to account for what you publish.

“In a free society with free speech, you can’t be a coward and attack people and expect not to be held accountable for it.”

The reforms will give victims of defamatory online comments two ways to unmask trolls and resolve disputes.

First, global social media platforms will be required to establish a quick, simple and standardised complaints system that ensures defamatory remarks can be removed and trolls identified with their consent. This recognises that Australians often just want harmful comments removed.

Second, a new Federal Court order will be established that requires social media giants to disclose identifying details of trolls to victims, without consent, which will then enable a defamation case to be lodged.

Importantly, the reforms will also ensure everyday Australians and Australian organisations with a social media page are not legally considered publishers and cannot be held liable for any defamatory comments posted on their page, providing them with certainty.

Attorney-General Michaelia Cash said this was in response to the Voller High Court case, which made clear that Australians who maintain social media pages can be ‘publishers’ of defamatory comments made by others on social media—even if the page owner does not know about the comments.

“Since the High Court’s decision in the Voller case, it is clear that ordinary Australians are at risk of being held legally responsible for defamatory material posted by anonymous online trolls,” the Attorney-General said.

“This is not fair and it is not right. Australians expect to be held accountable for their own actions, but shouldn’t be made to pay for the actions of others that they cannot control.

“The reforms will make clear that, in defamation law, Australians who operate or maintain a social media page are not ‘publishers’ of comments made by others.”

The Attorney General said the package of reforms would complement the defamation reforms currently being progressed in partnership with states and territories, and sit alongside the Government’s commitment to improving online safety.

“Social media providers should bear their fair share of responsibility for defamatory material published on their platforms,” the Attorney-General said. ‘This reflects the current law.’

“However, if defamatory comments are made in Australia, and social media providers help victims contact the individuals responsible, it is appropriate they have access to a defence.”

These new powers build on the Morrison Government’s other world-leading reforms, from establishing the eSafety Commissioner, to legislating the new Online Safety Act, to drafting new online privacy laws and securing support for global action to be discussed at the G20 in Indonesia in 2022.

An exposure draft of the legislation will be released in the coming week. This will provide all Australians, the industry, states, territories and stakeholders to have their say on these important new laws.

Qantas Melb-Delhi flight from 22 Dec, 2021 as recovery takes off


By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 22 November 2021: There’s good news for Indian-origin Australians as the Qantas has announced a new passenger route from Melbourne to Delhi, starting 22 December.

Victoria is home to the largest Indian population in Australia, with more than 209,000 Victorians of Indian heritage recorded at the 2016 Census, and hosts leading Indian businesses including Cyient, HCL Technologies, Infosys, State Bank of India, TCS, Tech Mahindra and Wipro.

With quarantine-free travel now available for fully vaccinated international travellers, including international students returning under the state’s International Student Arrivals Plan, the availability of a Melbourne-Delhi flight will help revitalise trade, tourism, international education, skilled migration and business connections.

The new Melbourne-Delhi flight will operate four times a week, year-round. Same day connections will also be available from Brisbane, Sydney and Canberra. Flights from Melbourne to Delhi will initially operate via Adelaide, while flights from Delhi to Melbourne will operate nonstop.

This follows the recent announcement of flights from Sydney to Delhi, which start next month. When this route went on sale, Qantas saw the fastest booking surge for flights leaving Australia since the airline announced its international restart plans in August.

Minister for Industry Support and Recovery and Minister for Trade Martin Pakula joined Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce and Melbourne Airport chief executive Lyell Strambi at Melbourne Airport today as passengers on flight QF35 departed for Singapore. The Qantas international flight took off again today for the first time in 20 months after the pandemic grounded international travel.

Minister for Industry Support and Recovery and Minister for Trade Martin Pakula said, “A vibrant international aviation sector is what makes Melbourne a truly global city and reviving the visitor economy is key to our economic recovery.”

“The new service to Delhi is wonderful news for our large Indian community as well as Indian business leaders, investors, international students and visitors.”

“We’re opening up to boost jobs, trade and tourism and most importantly, help Victoria bounce back bigger and better than ever.”

QF35 is the first Qantas international passenger flight to depart Melbourne since March 2020, with flights to London and Los Angeles to resume in the next few weeks.

The resumption of international flights will drive the recovery of the state’s international aviation sector which directly employs 6,700 people and supports thousands of other jobs.

Before the pandemic, international flights brought more than 3.1 million international visitors to Victoria each year and injected $8.8 billion of tourism expenditure into the economy.

Australia to establish a new Consulate General in Bengaluru


By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 17 November 2021: Australia has decided to establish a new Consulate General in Bengaluru. The decision was announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison during a message to the Bengaluru Tech Summit today. “Australia’s new mission in Bengaluru would expand our diplomatic presence in India to five posts, the PM said.

“Australia will deepen our ties to India’s innovators, to your technologists and entrepreneurs — as well as India’s governments at all levels. It is appropriate that today as you gather for this Tech Summit in India, that we’re kicking off the first-ever Sydney Dialogue in Australia.

This is a global summit on emerging, critical and cyber technologies — and I’m delighted to be announcing Australia’s first-ever Blueprint for Critical Technologies at that event. This signals Australia’s firm commitment to shaping the development and adoption of critical technologies internationally, including by working with trusted partners like India, PM Scott Morrison said.

The PM said, “We’re sharing expertise on cyber and critical technologies like quantum computing and AI. We’re working to make our supply chains more secure and resilient.

We’re collaborating on the mining and processing of critical minerals — like cobalt and lithium and rare earth elements — that are vital to clean energy technologies, and have military applications.

We’re also cooperating on space science, technology, and research — and Australia is proud to be supporting India’s inspirational Gaganyaan human spaceflight mission. We’re deepening our education and research links also — vital to technological cooperation.”

“I’m pleased a new Australia-India Centre of Excellence for Critical and Emerging Technology Policy will contribute to that effort. The Centre will bring together Australian and Indian technologists, policy practitioners, academics, researchers and thought leaders.

Helping our nations shape technology governance so it aligns with our values and supports an open, inclusive and resilient Indo-Pacific region. The Centre will also promote investment opportunities and innovation between Australia and India in technology, and amplify our policy influence globally, ” he said.

ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021: Wade completes brilliant chase to send Australia into the final with New Zealand ( Sunday, 14 Nov.)

Australia’s Marcus Stoinis and Matthew Wade during the 2nd semi-final of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup match between Australia and Pakistan, at Dubai International Cricket Stadium in Dubai on 11 Nov. 2021. Photo-ANI

By SAT News Desk/ICC Media Zone

Matthew Wade and Marcus Stoinis produced a brilliant partnership to carry Australia to a stunning five-wicket victory over Pakistan and set up a date with New Zealand in the final of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021.

When David Warner and Glenn Maxwell fell in successive overs from Shadab Khan, the chase of 177 seemed doomed, but Stoinis and Wade had other ideas as they put on 81 in 7.4 overs.

Stoinis started the comeback as he went after Haris Rauf, but it was Wade who did the most damage with three consecutive sixes off Shaheen Shah Afridi after being dropped by Hasan Ali to seal an unlikely success.

Pakistan had made 176 for four batting first thanks to half-centuries from Mohammad Rizwan and Fakhar Zaman, while Shadab Khan’s four for 26 looked to have swung the game their way.

But this Australia team has already shown incredible resolve in this tournament and it was the case again here as they dug themselves out of a hole to reach a second ICC Men’s T20 World Cup final.

It was a remarkable game, with Pakistan batting consultant Matthew Hayden revealing that Rizwan had spent the previous night in hospital with a lung problem, but he was fit to take his place in Dubai as Pakistan were put in to bat.

And while he looked very nervous early on, Babar Azam was able to score quickly before Rizwan settled in.

He was almost dismissed off Maxwell, a surprise choice to bowl in the powerplay, with Warner racing back but not quite able to take a stunner over his shoulder.

The turning point for Rizwan seemed to be the first ball of the fifth over from Josh Hazlewood which he smashed for six over the legside, before being given a second life, Adam Zampa this time putting down a tough chance off the last ball of the powerplay when it was whipped flat down to him at long leg but slipped from his grasp inches from the ground.

With 47 for none, Pakistan had their best score of the powerplay in the tournament and Babar continued to press on. But Maxwell and Zampa then managed to stem the flow of runs and that pressure told as Babar tried to take on the latter, picking out Warner on the boundary.

Maxwell’s bowling was proving crucial, ensuring that Australia’s fifth bowler would not prove the weak link as he went for just 20 from three overs.

Rizwan’s charge was slowed by a vicious short delivery from Mitchell Starc which rattled into the grill on his helmet.

He responded by hitting Hazlewood for six before getting to his half-century the next delivery.

In this tournament, Pakistan have been exceptional in the final four overs, and it was no different here as Fakhar finally found his groove, smashing Hazlewood for six over long-on before Rizwan put a high full toss away for four and the resulting free hit into the stands for six. With 21 off that over and 49 off his four, Hazlewood proved expensive.

Eventually, Rizwan went for 67, scooping Starc to mid-off, but Fakhar, the only Pakistan batter who had not really fired in this tournament to date, had his eye in. The next ball he smashed Starc miles back over his head before almost taking out umpire Chris Gaffaney with a straight four.

Asif Ali had averaged a six every three balls in this tournament, but he could not contribute this time, picking out Steve Smith on the boundary on his first ball, from Pat Cummins.

It should have been two in two but Smith put down Fakhar next ball, running in from the boundary as he watched the ball bounce out of his hands.

While Cummins went for just three runs off the 19th over, and Starc removed Shoaib Malik at the start of the last, back-to-back sixes from Fakhar took him to an unbeaten 55 and Pakistan to an imposing 176 for four.

Australia’s chase got off to the worst possible start as Shaheen produced one of the overs of the tournament to kick things off. He trapped Aaron Finch leg before off the third delivery, then Mitchell Marsh almost suffered the same fate from a yorker next ball, surviving the review thanks to a pair of umpire’s calls.

In the fourth over, Warner started to take a liking to Imad Wasim, and as he and Marsh got going, suddenly Australia were motoring along.

By the end of the powerplay, they had 52 for one, the best of any team against Pakistan, but Shadab did for Marsh, a steepling catch well held by Asif as he fell for 28.

Mohammad Hafeez was brought into the attack and his first ball gripped in the hand and came out all wrong, bouncing twice before Warner lifted it into the stands, a no-ball rubbing salt into the wounds.

Steve Smith became Shadab’s second victim, again trying to attack and finding the fielder in the outfield, Fakhar the safe pair of hands on this occasion.

Warner was nearly run out after a misjudged single from Maxwell gave Fakhar a chance with a direct hit.

It felt like Warner had the win at his fingertips, while he was there, Australia were favourites. But the ball after the drinks break he went after one from Shadab that went away from him, nicking through to Rizwan. The elation from bowler and keeper as Warner fell for 49 told its own story.

Pakistan’s Shadab Khan celebrates the dismissal of Australia’s Glenn Maxwell during the 2nd semi-final of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup match between Australia and Pakistan, at Dubai International Cricket Stadium in Dubai on 11 November 2021. Photo-ANI

Remarkably, a replay appeared to indicate that Warner had missed the ball, but like everyone else, he obviously thought he had hit it, choosing not to review.

Shadab was piling on the pressure and he got another, again with the help of some good fielding, as Haris Rauf caught Maxwell with a diving grab in the deep from a reverse sweep as Australia’s most destructive batter departed for seven.

It was down to Stoinis and Wade and after another fine over from Shaheen, the equation was 62 from five overs.

Stoinis was first to take on the bowlers as targeted Haris, with a huge six over midwicket followed by a four driven straight back past the bowler.

The next over it was Wade who stepped into Hasan, hitting him back over his head for six to bring up the fifty partnership as Australia took 15 off the over in all, leaving 22 to get off two.

Shaheen returned for the penultimate over and Hasan had the chance to remove Wade, dropping the keeper in the outfield after he did not connect with a heave over midwicket. A ball later, Wade jumped across his stumps and scooped Shaheen for six to take Australia to within touching distance.

The next ball suffered the same fate, picked up and smashed over the leg side before he finished the job in style with a third maximum.

Scores in Brief

Australia beat Pakistan at Dubai International Stadium, Dubai by five wickets
Pakistan 176/4 in 20 overs (Mohammad Rizwan 67, Fakhar Zaman 55 not out; Mitchell Starc 2/38, Adam Zampa 1/22)
Australia 177/5 in 19 overs (David Warner 49, Matthew Wade 41 not out; Shadab Khan 4/26, Shaheen Shah Afridi 1/35)
Player of the Match: Matthew Wade (Australia)

Parents of Australian & Permanent Residents can apply for a travel restriction exemption, for travel to Australia from 1 November 2021.


By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 22 October 2021: There is good news for parents of Australian citizens and Permanent Residents to join their loved ones in Australia or overseas, as the Federal Government has permitted travel to and fro in this regard. Thousands who are stranded in this category are now eligible to apply for exemption from travel restrictions because of the Covid-19 pandemic, to travel from 1 November 2021. PM ScoMO talked about it at his media conference today:

Video clip- PM office.

Minister for Home Affairs Karen Andrews said the changes would reunite many families separated by the pandemic.

“For more than 18 months, many families with parents overseas have missed weddings, funerals, the birth of grandchildren, and other significant events. I thank these families for their patience and their sacrifice over this period,” Minister Andrews said.

“With today’s change, parents of Australian citizens and permanent residents can reunite in Australia; they can once more hold their grandchildren, and gather in-person to share life’s significant milestones.

“The change is possible because many millions of Australians have rolled up their sleeves and been vaccinated. In line with Australia’s National Plan, I look forward to further easing travel restrictions over coming weeks and months as Australia’s vaccination rate continues to climb.”

Applications for a travel exemption can be made through the Department of Home Affairs Travel Exemption Portal, for travel to Australia from 1 November 2021. A variety of parental relationships are recognized, including biological, adoptive, legal, step-parent, and parent-in-law.

Evidence of a parental relationship with an Australian citizen or permanent resident is required, with examples of the type of evidence required available on the Department’s website. Parents must also have a valid passport, visa, and proof of vaccination for travel to Australia.

All international travelers remain subject to state and territory quarantine arrangements says a media release.