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Sunday, February 25, 2024

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Canada To Stop Ads On Meta Platforms

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The government of Canada is determined to take off its entire advertising from Instagram and Facebook.

The move has been taken after Facebook’s parent company Meta started restricting news content for Canadians. Even Meta’s move came in response to the law passed by the Canadian parliament according to which tech companies would need to pay media for the news content they provide on the tech platforms.

Officials of Canada are resolute about not being “intimidated” by Meta. They support the law to such an extent that said they have maintained contacts with countries who are intending to pass similar laws.

In the light of the new law, Online News Act, passed by Canadian parliament which will be implemented in six weeks, Google has said that it will prevent Canadian news in the country. The news act is also called Bill C-18.

On the other hand, Canadian officials stated that they believe they can strike a deal with Alphabet, Google’s parent company, to stop Google from taking such step. Minister of Heritage Pablo Rodriguez in a news conference on Wednesday, said, “Google’s concerns can be met by what we plan to do in the (law’s) regulations.” He also added that Meta’s association with the government has not been the same for going ahead together. He further said, “Meta are not talking to us,” and said called its decision to stop news for Canadians as “unreasonable and irresponsible”.

According to Rodriguez, the internet giant will lose C$10 million ($7.54 million) in revenue as a result of Canada’s decision to stop all advertising on Meta’s platform.

He did not specify whether the commercial withdrawal would apply to Threads, a new platform from Meta that would compete with Twitter and launch on Thursday. However, Rodriguez noted that in theory, all platforms run by the parent firm would come under Canada’s action.

For Meta, whose yearly revenue in 2022 was over $116 billion, the loss of government advertising was a drop in the ocean. However, Rodriguez asserted that Canada is determined to make it clear that it won’t be frightened.

Bill C-18, according to Meta, “is flawed legislation that ignores the realities of how our platforms work. Publishers actively choose to post on Facebook and Instagram because it benefits them to do so” in a statement to the BBC.

According to the federal government, struggling news groups require the law to “secure fair compensation” for news and links provided on tech platforms.

In 2021, Australia passed a bill quite similar to Bill C-18, although it was modified after Meta temporarily barred Australian users from posting or viewing news on its platform.

The blackout was over after the changes were made, and Google and Meta have subsequently talked with Australian media firms about more than 30 arrangements.

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