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Justin Trudeau Just Made YouTube Uploads, iTunes Podcasts and More Subject to CRTC Rules

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The federal government’s Bill C-10 proposed last fall aims to amend the Broadcasting Act, to essentially push taxes and requirements on all streaming services on the internet, to have them contribute to Canadian content like traditional broadcasters.

Bill C-10 had an exception to exclude social media, but that has now been ripped out according to followers of today’s Meeting No. 26 of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage (CHPC).

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Michael Geist, University of Ottawa Law Professor, explained this afternoon, “Last week I wrote that the Liberal government has become the most anti-Internet government in Canadian history. It got worse today as it incredibly removed the social media exception from Bill C-10 during clause-by-clause committee review. ”

“The effect: the CRTC would have regulatory power over all user uploaded videos as “programs” under the Act. YouTube, Facebook and any other site with user generated content video subject to CRTC rules. Massive expansion of free speech regulation in Canada,” explained Geist.

Geist further detailed, “the Conservatives wanted more regulation too but called for thresholds for regulating social media companies. Liberals voted to repeal the exclusion altogether so all user generated content could be subject to discoverability requirements or other CRTC regulations.”

The move means user generated content uploaded to platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, and podcasts to Apple’s iTunes, for example, will now be subject to CRTC regulation. Many fear the change made on a Friday afternoon could result in limiting free speech on the internet.

The video above shows the Liberal government voting to remove the social media exception at roughly the 13:40 video mark.

Last month, Heritage Minister, Steven Guilbeault, said sharing links on Facebook was “immoral”, but then he was caught doing the same. His Facebook also showed videos from media outlets where he did interviews with, but ones had ripped and re-uploaded himself.

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