Popular newspaper free Israeli daily, Yisrael Hayom, is under legislation threatening its business model. The paper, owned by billionaire Sheldon Adelson, is currently free, and boasts a 26.6 percent market share – the largest in Israel.
Member of Knesset Eitan Cabel (Labor) submitted a bill that targets Yisrael Hayom specifically. The proposed law legislates the four top newspapers by subscription, and mandates that the price of the newspaper with the lowest cost be no less than 70% of the next cheapest newspaper’s price. This would ensure that Yisrael Hayom could no longer be given out for free, and the bill does not affect any other newspaper.
Tzipi Livni made it no secret the bill is targeting the paper, saying “My stance is clear. Israel Hayom is not a newspaper, it is election propaganda funded by someone very problematic with a worldview that goes against Israel’s interests.”
The bill passed its reading in committee, and the Knesset vote will take place on Wednesday. Interestingly, the bill was not brought to vote in the committee, but simply passed for voting.