After the Senate passed the Online News Act Thursday, Meta confirmed it will remove news content from Facebook and Instagram for all Canadian users, but it remained unclear whether Google would follow suit for its platforms.
The act, which was known as Bill C-18, was created to force Google and Facebook to share revenues with publishers for news stories that appear on their platforms. By removing news altogether, companies would be exempt from the legislation.
On a blog post Thursday, Facebook said that they are confirming that news availability will be ended on Facebook and Instagram for all users. “Content from news outlets, including news publishers and broadcasters, will no longer be available to people accessing our platforms in Canada.”
What this means for users is that you won’t be able to share news on your facebook or instagram accounts because it won’t show up on your feeds to begin with.
Facebook (meta) threatened the same action in Australia but then eventually negotiated a deal with the Australian government.
Google has also warned it could cut or end existing deals with Canadian news outlets in response to the bill. Google currently has deals with news publishers that cover 150 outlets , Google plans to eliminate those deals. Google spokesperson, Trudy Purdy said “we’re doing everything we can to avoid an outcome that no-one wants.”
If the companies remove news from their platforms, it’s unclear what recourse the Liberal government would have.