Microsoft backs Australian plan to make Google pay for news

CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Microsoft says it supports Australia’s plans to make the biggest digital platforms pay for news. Microsoft has been positioning itself to increase market share for its search engine Bing after a Google executive told a Senate hearing last month that it would likely make its search engine unavailable in Australia if Google and Facebook had to pay for Australian news. Microsoft President Brad Smith said in a statement Wednesday that he and the chief executive officer had told Prime Minister Scott Morrison last week that Microsoft fully supports the proposed law. Morrison has confirmed he had an online Microsoft meeting. Bing is Australia’s second most popular search engine.