C-11: text contradicts minister’s claims, writes YouTube

A spokeswoman for heritage minister Pablo Rodriguez responded that the government had made it clear that user-generated content was not subject to the law and that the text already reflected that desire. (Photo: Canadian Press)

Ottawa – YouTube says user-generated content such as home cooking videos could fall under the jurisdiction of the federal online content bill, despite a pledge from the heritage secretary that it won’t.

Speaking publicly for the first time on Bill C-11, YouTube Canada’s head of government relations and public policy, Jeanette Patel, said the terms and wording of the current version of the bill would be provided to the Canadian Radio, Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC). powers to regulate amateur video.

Speaking at the National Cultural Summit, she said that the text of the bill contradicts the statements of the Minister of Heritage Pablo Rodriguez, who assures that user-generated content is not subject to the “Law to Amend the Law on Broadcasting and Amendments to Other Laws Related and Consecutive”. “.

The matter should be discussed when the MPs consider in detail in committee the bill that follows the process of passage in the House of Commons.

YouTube says it has no problem recognizing that professional music videos can be legalized, but the platform wants the text of the law to clearly reflect the minister’s promise that amateur videos be exempt.

The minister’s spokeswoman responded that the government had made it clear that user-generated content was not subject to the law and that the text already reflected that desire.

Regulation C-11 provides for the exclusion of video content uploaded by users from viewing by other users.

“The action of a broadcasting enterprise for the purposes of this Law is not a fact for a user of a social networking service to download programs for the purpose of their transmission over the Internet and their reception by other users,” we can read in the wording submitted for the first reading on February 2.

If passed, Bill C-11 would force online content platforms such as Netflix, Spotify and YouTube to promote a certain amount of Canadian content and would also give the CRTC the power to control digital platforms.

It would also give the CRTC the power to regulate “outliers,” which YouTube interprets as a possible right to scrutinize a wide range of content, including amateur videos.

Ms. Patell told the summit that if the government wants to reserve “the ability in the future” to manage YouTube user content, “this needs to be discussed.” She called for more clarity on this element.

When the bill was introduced last February, Minister Rodriguez insisted that “video chat” or “influencers” should not be under the yoke of the CRTC.

“We were very clear: only platforms have obligations. Users and creators will not be controlled. The platforms are there, but the users are not,” Laura Scaffidi, a spokeswoman for the minister, confirmed.

In terms of promoting Canadian content, Reel Canada’s Jack Bloom, which created Canadian Film Day among others, stresses that it’s important to get the mainstream platforms to act or else Canadian stories will continue to be “extremely hard to find” online.

“The sheer size of these platforms makes it virtually impossible for Canadian stories to actually be present,” he explains. The market will never serve Canadians because Canadians don’t have enough market share.”


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