Facebook could block the news sharing in Canada, if a law were passed that would oblige the social media giant to pay them to the newspapers. In fact, Meta disputes that, as assumed by theOnline News Act, the company “unfairly benefited from its relationship with publishers”. And he promises to boycott the legislation.
Facebook will block news in Canada, so as not to pay publishers for it
First introduced in April, Canada’s Online News Act wants to persuade Facebook and Google to share part of the income derived from sharing news with whom those news published them. The intention is that the law wants to give publishers a higher compensation for the news published. With the hope that this translates into higher salaries for those who wrote them.
Last week the parliamentary commission dealing with the issue held a meeting on the matter, but Meta says she was not invited. And she prepares to block news sharing in Canada if the law goes through.
“If this draft rule becomes law, creating an unprecedented form of financial dependence globally for news and content links, we may be forced to consider stop sharing news content in Canada on Facebook”Explains the company.
The possible impact for publishers
According to Meta reports, publishers in Canada received last year over 1.9 billion clicks, generating 230 million Canadian dollars of value (170.6 million euros). For Facebook, this revenue will not come if it decides to block news sharing on its social networks.
On the other hand, the Canadian Parliament would like those nearly 2 billion clicks to generate more than about 8 and a half euro cents for those who publish the news. Though evaluate how complicated it is with the law only in draft state.
Google also stepped in, saying the Online News Act could “make it harder for Canadians to find and share trusted news online.” And even the Mountain View giant explains that the publishers already benefit from sharing news via social networks and search engines.
The Australian case
Canadian legislation partly incorporates the law News Media Bargaining Codeintroduced in Australia last year, which required Facebook and Google to pay for the news introduced on their platform.
In response, Facebook blocked news sharing in the country and Google threatened to remove its search engine from the country. Google however decided to stay in Australia and negotiated a deal with local media organizations. Facebook, on the other hand, only allowed sharing after the Australian government partially amended the law. The sharing block also ended up with warnings from firefighters and local health institutions, something Facebook called a mistake but some company whistleblowers this year called a “tactic to negotiate.”
It remains to be assessed what will happen in Canada, not only for local events but also for the possible effects around the world. With other governments that might ask the tech giants to compensate publishers for content published on its platforms.