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Google haring Deal To Avoid Online News Ban Canada Sign ‘Historic’ Revenue

The print media of Canada will receive nearly two-thirds of an annual payment of 75 million USD from Google in exchange for the distribution of their content. After months of negotiation, Ottawa and Google announced a ‘historic’ agreement at the end of November according to which the tech giant will pay Canadian media companies compensation for the loss of advertising revenue, as reported by news agency Agence France-Presse (AFP). The agreement will come into effect from Tuesday.

A Canadian federal officer told journalists on Friday, “The share that television and radio will receive is capped at 30 per cent, that of CBC/Radio-Canada (the Canadian public broadcaster) at seven per cent, which leaves the remaining 63 per cent for the written press,” as reported by AFP.

The official added that the prime reason for the print media getting the majority payout is because it is ‘really dependent’ on the online platforms to get its content distributed.

Minister of Canadian Heritage Pascale St-Onge said, “Canada has accomplished something historic.”

Onge stated that the newsrooms are experiencing a crisis that affects journalism which is a foundation of its democracy. Many media outlets are struggling financially and several have even announced layoff plans recently.

The annual compensation for news organizations, which is required by the Online News Act, will be distributed to outlets on the basis of the number of full-time journalists they hired in the last calendar year who were producing original news content, reported CBC.

The Online News Act aims to support the struggling news sector of Canada which has seen a flight of advertising dollars and also witnessed the shutting down of hundreds of publications in the last decade. The Act was due to be enforced from December 19. Had that been the case, Google would have removed news content links in Canada from its domain.

Another tech giant Meta, the parent company of Facebook, would also be affected by the new legislation. Meta still stands to oppose the text which it termed as ‘fundamentally flawed’. Since August 1, Facebook and Instagram have blocked news content in Canada in order to avoid having to compensate media companies financially, as AFP reported.