Canada is set to take to Facebook, following an example set by Australia, which started a war with tech giants when the country’s publishers supported a proposed law demanding payment for their content.
Canadian Heritage Minister Steven Guilbult described Facebook’s actions as “very irresponsible” last week when the social media giant removed all Australian news content from its sites in retaliation.
Guilbult warned that Canada would be ahead in ensuring Facebook paid for news content from Canadian publishers. In the next few months, Gilibault is charged with enacting a law that Google and Alphabet Inc.’s Google will have to pay.
“Canada is at the forefront of this fight … We are actually among the first group of countries around the world that are doing so.” Gilbialt told reporters.
Guilbult said he recently met with government ministers from Australia, Finland, France and Germany to iron out a common front regarding Google and Facebook, The Globe and Mail reported.
“This was the first ministerial meeting where we started talking jointly about what the web giants want to do together, including fair compensation for the media. We believe there is real strength in unity on that, “he said, adding that a growing coalition of countries in opposition to Facebook and Google may soon reach 15.” I’m a bit curious what the reaction of Facebook will be. Is Facebook going to cut ties with Germany, France, Canada, Australia and other countries? At a certain point, Facebook’s status will be completely unstable. “
In Canada, critics of social media giants welcomed the country’s stance regarding tech giants. Last week, Canadian jurist Alexandre Bowleris moved a motion in the House of Commons condemning Facebook’s actions, stating that “Facebook threats” have no place in democracy.
“We are seeing a turning point to challenge the monopoly, which is big technology,” said Megan Boley, a professor of media studies at the University of Toronto in an interview with The Post. “Right now, they are deciding what is the truth for the whole world. It is exciting that this is an issue that countries can attribute to Facebook and Google.
But others took to Twitter to blast Gilbialt’s plan. “If you force companies to pay for every link they make to another site that you are in to break the Internet,” @mattolan tweeted. “It hurts the Canadian media; It does not help. This is a very poorly thought out plan. “
Last year, Canadian publishers demanded government action against tech giants, warning that the country could lose hundreds of print journalism jobs. Following the Australian approach would allow Canadian publishers to reclaim approximately $ 500 million. This approach would require tech giants to access deals to pay news outlets whose links to stories lead users to their sites.
“We are not able to respond to the proposed legislation until we see the draft,” Kevin Chan, public director and head of public policy, Facebook Canada, said in a statement. “We believe there are other options to support news in Canada that will benefit publishers of all sizes more and recognize the values that platforms bring to news organizations. We are ready to collaborate on these complex issues . “