Submitted to The Online News Act
Media in Canada are owned by a small number of large corporations like Bell, Corus, Rogers, Quebecor and CBC. This op-ed worries about media self-censorship as these major players negotiate new revenue sharing deals:
“First, the bill increases dependence on the Internet companies, both in terms of reliance on new revenues and by virtue of the fact that the Internet companies – not Canadian media – effectively dictate how the new revenues will be spent.
Second, press independence is threatened by the self-censorship that Canadian media companies supportive of the bill are likely to pursue.
The term “censorship” is often thrown around too easily, but it is hard to avoid the conclusion that that is precisely what’s occurring here: the suppression of speech, public communication or other information considered inconvenient by a private institution. It is a direct result of Bill C-18, which has resulted in cheerleading from corporate media owners, suppression of critical views within the mainstream media, and risks to the fabric of the Internet by mandating payments for links.”
How do you feel about Facebook and Google negotiating private deals with broadcasters and news publishers?