Meta, true to its threats, is now blocking news content in Canada to retaliate for passage of the Online News Act, C-18.
In an update posted on Tuesday, Meta issued the following statement:
“In order to comply with the Online News Act, we have begun the process of ending news availability in Canada. These changes start today, and will be implemented for all people accessing Facebook and Instagram in Canada over the course of the next few weeks.”
The post continues, “People in Canada will no longer be able to view or share news content on Facebook and Instagram, including news articles and content posted by news outlets.”
The law requires that tech platforms compensate publishers for linking to their content. But the tech giants argue that they help local news publishers by linking to their content.
In June, Meta started testing its ability to block news content.
In its Tuesday blog post, Meta stated that news links and content posted by news publishers and broadcasters in Canada “will no longer be viewable by people in Canada. We are identifying news outlets based on legislative definitions and guidance from the Online News Act.”
The company adds, “News publishers and broadcasters outside of Canada will continue to be able to post news links and content, however, that content will not be viewable by people in Canada.”
The Hill writes that Google plans to remove links to Canadian news when the law takes effect in December.