Canada suspends advertising on Facebook, Instagram

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The Canadian federal government announced Wednesday it has decided to suspend all of its advertising on Facebook and Instagram as it is battling with tech platforms Meta and Google over the Online News Act, reported Xinhua.

Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez said in a news conference that the federal government cannot continue paying advertising dollars to Meta, the parent company owning Facebook and Instagram, while they refuse to pay their fair share to Canadian news organizations.

The federal government's Online News Act, or Bill C-18, received royal assent on July 22 and will come into force by the end of 2023. The legislation requires tech platforms to bargain with Canadian news organizations to fairly compensate them for their work. Tech giants Meta and Google have indicated they will block news content for Canadian users in response.

"Facebook has decided to be unreasonable, irresponsible and started blocking news," Rodriguez said. "This is why today we are announcing the Government of Canada will be suspending advertising on Facebook and Instagram. Google, on the other hand, has been open to finding a solution."

Google and Meta earn 80 percent of all digital advertising revenue in Canada, Rodriguez said on his social media.

According to Rodriguez, the Canadian federal government currently spends about 10 million Canadian dollars (7.5 million U.S. dollars) a year in advertising on Meta platforms.

The minister called on both platforms to stay at the table, work through the regulatory process, and contribute their fair share and keep news on their platform.

  •  Canada
  •  Facebook


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