Post Tagged with: "online news act"

Newseum: Do You Trust Blogs? by Rogers Cadenhead CC BY-SA 2.0 https://flic.kr/p/61fcXT

The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 209: Peter Menzies on Why the Canadian News Sector is Broken and How to Fix It

It isn’t news that the Canadian news sector is broken: the Online News Act has caused more harm the good, the dependence on government funding and regulation has grown dramatically and undermined public trust, and implementing Bill C-18 has become mired in controversy. Peter Menzies spent three decades as a working journalist and newspaper executive, most notably with the Calgary Herald where he served as its editorial page editor, editor in chief and, finally, publisher. He then spent another 10 years at the CRTC, including four as Vice Chair of Telecommunications. Peter been one of the most prominent voices on the state of the news sector in Canada and he joins the Law Bytes podcast to discuss recent developments alongside proposed reforms that might do a better job of addressing mounting concerns over the independence of the press.

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July 15, 2024 2 comments Podcasts
Sour grapes in Alemany Farmers' Market by SMcGarnigle, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Sour Grapes: Big Media Lobby Wants to Squash the New Collective Responsible For Administering Google’s $100 Million Online News Act Money

Late last month, I wrote about the behind-the-scenes battle over the selection of a collective to administer and allocate Google’s annual $100 million to news outlets as part of its Bill C-18 deal with the government. I reported that there were two proposals: the Online News Media Collective, a big media consortium led by News Media Canada (NMC), the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB), and the CBC, which was pitted against the Canadian Journalism Collective, a proposal spearheaded by a group of independent and digital publishers and broadcasters that promised a more transparent and equitable governance approach. To the surprise of many, last week Google selected the Canadian Journalism Collective.

The importance of who administers the collective is open to some debate since all eligible news outlets get their fair share regardless of which collective is responsible for allocating the money. However, concerns emerged that the big media collective envisioned a governance structure almost completely controlled by its own members, largely shutting out independent outlets and digital publishers and broadcasters. That governance control opened the door to implementing Bill C-18 in a manner that would benefit big media over the independents.

Yesterday members of the big media collective responded to Google’s choice with a request to the CRTC that can only be described as sour grapes.

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June 12, 2024 6 comments News
PowerBall 100 Million by bbyrnes59 CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 https://flic.kr/p/dS6xX

The Behind-the-Scenes Bill C-18 Battle: How Newspapers, Big Broadcasters and the CBC Are Trying to Seize Control Over How Google Money is Allocated to Canadian Media

Bill C-18, the Online News Act, is best known for two things: the government’s bad bet that Meta was bluffing when it said it would block news links in response to a system that mandated payments for links (news links have now been blocked for 10 months in Canada) and its attempt to salvage the legislation by striking a deal with Google worth $100 million annually. The Google deal has receded into the background, but the behind the scenes there is an intense battle over who will be selected to administer and allocate the annual $100 million. The outcome – which will be decided by Google by June 17th – will have enormous implications for Canadian media for years to come since it is anticipated that Google and the selected collective will negotiate a five year deal worth $500 million. Sources say that two proposals have emerged: a big media consortium led by News Media Canada (NMC), the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB), and the CBC, pitted against a proposal spearheaded by a group of independent and digital publishers and broadcasters that is promising a more transparent and equitable governance approach.

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May 28, 2024 6 comments News
If you don't like the rules rewrite them by Duncan Cumming https://flic.kr/p/2fS1Hhe CC BY-NC 2.0

Bill C-18 is Dead, Long Live Bill C-18: Government Rewrites Online News Act With Final Regulations

The government this morning released the final Online News Act regulations, effectively gutting the law in order to convince Google to refrain from blocking news links in Canada and to fix some of the legislative mistakes that have been apparent from the start. While proponents of the law will point to the $100 million contribution from Google as evidence of success, privately most in the industry and government acknowledge the obvious: Bill C-18 was deeply flawed and a massive miscalculation that has created far more harm than good. Canadian Heritage Minister Pascale St-Onge seemingly agrees as she was willing to make changes that were derided by the government throughout the legislative process. Indeed, by the time St-Onge took over the file that was a challenging salvage job, Meta’s $20 million in news deals were lost and blocked news links on Facebook and Instagram was a reality. The prospect of the same happening with Google was too much for the industry and the government since the lost deals would have been at least double that amount (many believe in the $40-50 million range) and lost news links in search would have been catastrophic.

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December 15, 2023 11 comments News
Digital news revolution by George Kelly CC BY 2.0 https://flic.kr/p/6fgK1U

The Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 187: Jeff Elgie on What the Bill C-18 Deal With Google Means for the Future of the Canadian News Sector

The Canadian government tried to salvage the Online News Act last week as its struck a deal with Google that will bring in $100 million to support the news sector and remove concerns about blocked news links. The government had to overhaul its own law in order to reach the agreement, tossing aside most of the core elements in favour of a fund-style single payment from Google. The reaction to the agreement from the news sector has been mixed at best with relative silence from many supporters and outright opposition from the likes of Torstar.

So what to make the of the deal and what comes next? Jeff Elgie is the CEO of Village Media, one of the largest independent, digital-only news outlets in Canada. He joins the Law Bytes podcast to walk though his participation in the process, reaction to the agreement, and thoughts for the future.

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December 4, 2023 3 comments Podcasts