Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has hit back at Google over its experiment burying Australian news content on its search engine, telling the tech giant to focus on paying for it instead.
The government is battling Google and Facebook over plans to force the companies to pay news publishers for their content.
"The digital giants should focus on paying for original content, not blocking it," Mr Frydenberg said.
Google says the bargaining code, which is being examined by a Senate committee before a vote in parliament early this year, will damage its business.
The competition watchdog is also planning to release a report on the search engine's market power over the local advertisement market.
The government is preparing to introduce a voluntary code of conduct in relation to online disinformation, pushing companies like Facebook and Google to be more transparent and accountable about policing their content.
The issue comes as senior government ministers have this week declined to rebuke Liberal backbencher Craig Kelly for peddling conspiracy theories about a violent siege of the US Capitol and promoting discredited coronavirus cures.
Mr Kelly's controversial views landed him a meeting last year with deputy chief medical officer Nick Coatsworth, who later said the pair had agreed to disagree on coronavirus treatments.
"When I see something that I believe is a new study, that I think is very informative that the TGA needs to be made aware of, I'm sending that information to the TGA and also to the national COVID taskforce," Mr Kelly told AAP.
"We're not in the emergencies they're facing in some overseas countries but we've got borders closed, we've got chaos all over the place, we've got hotel quarantine - all sorts of issues there - restrictions on businesses, people very scared and frightened."
The backbencher says he sends information to Health Minister Greg Hunt too, who this week would not criticise Mr Kelly's posts.
"I text Greg regularly, give him updates and he's always very courteous in his replies."
The backbencher says he gets about one million engagements each month on his Facebook page, which he manages himself.
Australian Associated Press