Thanks to the Online News Act, Canada’s news organizations are expected to see substantial financial support
GATINEAU, QC, Nov. 29, 2023 /CNW/ – The Honourable Pascale St-Onge, Minister of Canadian Heritage, today issued the following statement:
“Following weeks of productive discussions, I am happy to announce that we have found a path forward with Google for the implementation of the Online News Act. This will benefit the news sector and allow Google to continue to play an important role in giving Canadians access to reliable news content.
As part of this framework, Google will contribute $100 million in financial support annually, indexed to inflation, for a wide range of news businesses across the country, including independent news businesses and those from Indigenous and official-language minority communities. Google will have the option to work with a single collective to distribute its contribution to all interested eligible news businesses based on the number of full-time equivalent journalists engaged by those businesses.
A sustainable news ecosystem is good for everyone. News and journalism serve to inform communities, drive civic engagement and counter the rise of disinformation. Access to news helps Canadians fully benefit and participate in democratic society. With newsrooms cutting positions or closing entirely, the health of the Canadian news industry has never been more at risk.
Our government has remained confident all along that this Act was a viable, equitable framework for news organizations and digital platforms.”
The Online News Act facilitates fair commercial relationships between digital platforms, like Google, and Canadian news outlets.
In addition to its financial contribution, Google has indicated that it will continue to make programs available for Canadian news businesses, such as training, tools and resources for business development and support for non-profit journalism projects.
Google has provided assurances that Canadian news businesses will continue to be treated commensurately with their global peers. If for some reason that is no longer the case, Google has agreed it will discuss the matter with both the Government and the industry with a view to resolving any concerns.
Canadian Heritage will share more details about the final regulations following approval by the Treasury Board of Canada and prior to the Act coming into effect on December 19, 2023.
SOURCE Canadian Heritage