A daily 5 minute news wrap for English learners.

Published on
Friday, January 22, 2021 - 12:01
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4 min 26 sec


Welcome to SBS News in Easy English, Im Marcus Megalokonomos.


People from Victoria who are stuck in Brisbane and Sydney can return to their home state from tomorrow, unless they’re in Cumberland, in Sydney’s west, which remains a "red zone".

In more good news for Victorians, Premier Daniel Andrews says the number of visitors allowed in a person's home will increase from 15 people to 30 people.

"The public health team would be evaluating and analysing what further steps could be taken. Those steps, of course, have to be safe. It is an extension of every Victorian and every Australian working together, playing our part and doing everything we can, so that we are not just keeping Victoria safe and open, we are keeping the nation open."

Victoria has recorded 16 days in a row of no COVID-19 cases in the community.

"There's 31 active cases of coronavirus in Victoria including one new case overnight in hotel quarantine. That case relates to the Australian Open. This is the 16th consecutive day of zero cases, which in the local community is a fantastic achievement and one that every Victorian should be proud of. We all have to remain vigilant though. We all have to keep playing our part, doing the things that must be done to keep us safe and keep us open."


The best tennis player in the world, Ashleigh Barty, says she is sorry for not wearing a mask in a supermarket in Melbourne.

The Australian tennis player says it was an "innocent mistake" and will try take coronavirus rules more seriously.

Queensland has also recorded another day of no new COVID-19 cases in the community.


Federal Finance Minister Simon Birmingham is trying to calm divisions over celebrating Australia Day on the 26th of January.

"Let's celebrate together, as one bringing all of those different strands that make Australia a diverse and successful nation together, and try to make sure that we do see Australia Day as one where Australians one and all can look at success and acknowledge of course that there are challenges and failures that we've had like any nation over the years."

A survey conducted by French social media group Yubo found that most young Australians want the date of Australia Day changed.

For many Indigenous Australians, the date of the First Fleet's arrival is a date of mourning that marks the European invasion of the continent after over 60,000 years of Indigenous occupation.


Google has threatened to stop making its search engine available in Australia, if Parliament passes laws to make Google and Facebook pay news outlets for their work.

Appearing in front of an inquiry, Google Australia managing director Melanie Silva shared concerns to a Senate panel.

"This lies at the heart of our concerns with the Code, that requires payments simply for links and snipets just to news results in search. The free service we offer to Australian users and our business model has been built on the ability to link freely between websites.This is a key building block of the internet. If this version of the code were to become law, it would give us no real choice but to stop making google search availiable in Australia."

The inquiry will also hear from Free TV Australia, ABC, SBS, and the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.


Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has rejected an idea to extend JobKeeper payments for hospitality workers.

JobKeeper is a government payment support scheme helping businesses that were affected by COVID-19.

The support payment is due to end at the end of March.


And organisers of the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo say they do not have a back-up plan, the event must go ahead.

The one-in-four-year event was postponed last year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The delayed Games are due to take place exactly six months from now.

I'm Marcus Megalokonomos and this is SBS News in Easy English.