Meta on Saturday said it would end the availability o news content for its Canadian users if the county’s Online News Act passes in its current form.
The news was reported by Reuters which noted that the social media giant along with other tech giants like Google is planning to negotiate commercial deals and pay news publishers for their content.
For context, the House of Commons bill C-18 usually referred to as the Online News Act was introduced back in April 2022 which laid out rules to force big tech companies like Meta to pay news publishers for their content.
“A legislative framework that compels us to pay for links or content that we do not post, and which are not the reason the vast majority of people use our platforms, is neither sustainable nor workable,” a Meta spokesperson said as a reason to suspend news access in the country.
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While Google is starting to test out limited news censorship as a potential response to the bill, Meta on the other hand is thinking about ending the service to its Canadian users altogether.
The decision by the Canadian authorities came after the country’s news media industry requested the government more regulation of tech companies to allow the industry to recoup financial losses it has suffered in the years due to tech giants steadily raking in the greater market share of advertising.
The Department of Canadian Heritage did not immediately respond to a Reuters’ request for comment on Meta’s move to end news access in the country.
Because Meta is trying to avoid all of these issues, the company is reportedly contemplating whether to outright pull the plug on news-sharing in the country if the bill passes.