Canadian news publishers have outlined the severe challenges they would face if big tech platforms block their content.
Jeff Elgie, CEO of Village Media, told senators studying the bill that Google and Facebook generate more than 50 per cent of his digital company’s web traffic, according to a story in the Toronto Star.
Pierre-Elliott Levasseur, president of Quebec’s La Presse, said if news sharing was blocked on Facebook alone, the publisher would take a “financial hit” of under a million dollars. And Phillip Crawley, publisher and CEO of the Globe and Mail, said the paper would lose millions of dollars if faced with a Facebook news ban in Canada.
The trio were discussing Bill C-18, or the Online News Act at the Senate’s transport and communications committee. The publishers suggested a number of amendments they’d like to see, such as tweaking a section of the bill critics say gives the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) wide latitude to demand confidential information from news companies. Other suggestions are to push for more transparency in the bill to make it clear who is getting money from the platforms.
Read the full story at The Star