Senator John Kennedy says he’s got legislation that would address the raw deals smaller news media outlets are getting from social media giants who use their content. Kennedy wants to empower small media outlets by temporarily suspending antitrust laws for them.

He says this would allow them to collectively negotiate for more profit sharing from companies that use their content.

“It will allow them to get together, which will increase their bargaining strength, and go to Google and Facebook and try to negotiate a better deal on profit sharing.”

Democratic presidential candidate Amy Klobuchar is co-sponsoring the legislation.

The Republican Junior Senator says Facebook and Google are so big they’ve basically become countries and are increasingly difficult to negotiate with for small companies. He says this has created an environment where media outlets are not getting rewarded for their hard work.

“The small newspapers or radio stations are doing all the work and then Google, or Facebook, are taking all of the work product and they put it on their website, and then go sell advertising.”

Kennedy says this bill isn’t about demonizing successful American companies, but about promoting a more competitive negotiating situation between social media, and the people who create content for it.

“Google, Facebook, and a number of other social media companies are great American companies, they’ve been extraordinarily successful. They are very big. Big in and of itself is not bad.”

Several Democratic presidential candidates have called for using anti-trust laws to “break up” social media giants. Kennedy says he’s not sure how he feels about the effort at this time.

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