June 19th, 2024

Media advocate calls Google’s move to block news content disrespectful to Canadians

By The Canadian Press on February 23, 2023.

The Google logo is seen at the Vivatech show in Paris, France, June 15, 2022. News Media Canada, who is an advocate for the print and digital media industry says Google is disrespecting readers by temporarily blocking news to some of its users. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Thibault Camus

OTTAWA – Advocates for the print and digital media industry say Google is disrespecting Canadian readers by temporarily blocking news to some of its users.

News Media Canada president Paul Deegan says the action is unbecoming of the leading global company.

Google confirmed on Wednesday that it’s blocking less than four per cent of Canadian users from viewing news content in a five-week test run of a potential response to the Liberal government’s online news bill.

Bill C-18 would require digital giants such as Google and Meta, which owns Facebook, to negotiate deals to compensate Canadian media companies for displaying or providing links to their news content.

FRIENDS, formerly known as Friends of Canadian Broadcasting, says the move by Google is about greed.

Its executive director Marla Boltman says Google is pursuing money at all costs, rather than co-operating with lawmakers around the world to support and sustain the free press and democracy.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 23, 2023.

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