Google is blocking some Canadian users from viewing news content in what the company says is a test run of a possible response to the Canadian government’s Online News Act.
Bill C-18 (Online News Act) requires digital giants such as Meta, which owns Google and Facebook, to negotiate compensation for Canadian media companies republishing content on their platforms .
The company said Wednesday that it is temporarily restricting access to news content for less than 4% of its Canadian users while it evaluates potential legal responses. The change applies to both the ubiquitous search engine and his Discover feature on Android devices, which includes news and sports stories.
The company says the test will last about five weeks and will affect all types of news content. This includes content produced by Canadian broadcasters and newspapers.
His spokesperson, Shay Purdy, responded to questions from the Canadian Press on Wednesday in a written statement briefly testing potential product responses to the Bill C-18. said it affected a small percentage of users.
He added that the company conducts thousands of tests each year to assess possible changes to search engines.
“We have been completely transparent about our concerns that C-18 is so pervasive that, if left unchecked, it could impact products that Canadians use and rely on on a daily basis. “It’s been a long time,” he said Purdy.
A spokesman for Canada’s Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez said Canadians would not be afraid, saying he was disappointed that Google was borrowing from his Playbook on his Meta. Last year, the company threatened to ban news from its website in response to legislation.
It didn’t work in Australia and it won’t work here either. It only asks tech giants to pay journalists when they use their work, spokeswoman Laura Scafidi said in a statement Wednesday.
Canadians need factual, quality news locally and nationally. That’s why we introduced the Online News Act. Tech giants need to be more transparent and accountable to Canadians.
Rodriguez argues that legislation similar to Australia’s 2021 law will improve fairness in the digital news market by providing a framework and negotiation process for online giants to pay media companies. doing.
However, Google has voiced its concerns before a congressional committee that future legislation would no longer require publishers to adhere to basic journalism standards and would favor large publishers over smaller ones. He expressed concern about the proliferation of cheap, low-quality clickbait content. You can be more interested in journalism than in public affairs.
The company says it wants to pay a fund similar to the Canadian Media Fund, which pays news publishers indirectly.
The bill passed the Canadian House of Representatives in December and is expected to be considered by the Senate in the coming months.
(Only the headlines and images in this report may have been edited by his Business Standard contributor; the rest of the content is syndicated auto-generated from his feed.)