Google to remove Canadian news from search over law requiring payments to local publishers
By Randy Thanthong-Knight | Bloomberg
Alphabet Inc. said it will remove links to Canadian news from its Google search engine after the country passed a law requiring digital platforms to pay local publishers for news content.
The Online News Act “creates uncertainty for our products and exposes us to uncapped financial liability simply for facilitating Canadians’ access to news from Canadian publishers,” Kent Walker, the California-based company’s president of global affairs, said in a statement.
Walker said the links will be removed when the law takes effect later this year.
The move followed Meta Platforms Inc.’s announcement last week that it will end the availability of news on Facebook and Instagram for all users in Canada. Both Alphabet and Meta had tested blocking news on their platforms for a small number of Canadian users in recent months.
Tech giants have argued that they would be unfairly forced to pay for content that has no economic benefits, but the government said the bill would help level the playing field, diverting some advertising revenue to the Canadian media sector that saw 450 outlets close between 2008 and 2021.
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