Google has announced plans to remove Canadian news articles from its search engine and other products in Canada when a law requiring major online platforms to pay news publishers takes effect in the country.
In a statement on Thursday, Google said Canada’s Bill C-18 – the so-called Online News Act, which was passed last week – “remains unworkable”.
“We have now informed the Government that when the law takes effect, we unfortunately will have to remove links to Canadian news from our Search, News and Discover products in Canada,” the company said.
“We’re disappointed it has come to this. We don’t take this decision or its impacts lightly and believe it’s important to be transparent with Canadian publishers and our users as early as possible.”
The move could have a devastating effect on Canadian news outlets, many of which are already struggling financially and have faced several rounds of job cuts in recent years.
Unfortunately, we’ve made the difficult decision that when Bill C-18 takes effect, we will remove Canadian news links from our Search, News and Discover products. https://t.co/ilWrF1uRuS pic.twitter.com/wMdoignNlC
— Google Canada (@googlecanada) June 29, 2023
June 29, 2023
“Google & Facebook have shut out Canadian news orgs from their platforms and decided to be dictators of what information Canadians can search, discover and consume. This violates the very foundations of an open internet,” The Canadian Association of Journalists tweeted on Thursday.
“Corporate selfishness is kneecapping Canadian democracy.”