Facebook threatens to block news content in Canada over Online News Act – ABC News

Facebook threatens to block news content in Canada over Online News Act
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Facebook has warned it may block the sharing of news content on its platform in Canada over concerns about legislation that would compel digital platforms to pay news publishers.
The Online News Act, introduced in April, laid out rules to force platforms like Meta's Facebook and Alphabet's Google to negotiate commercial deals and pay news publishers for their content.
The move is similar to laws passed last year which saw Facebook cut all third-party content from Australian accounts for eight days and Google threaten to close its search engine before a deal was struck. 
The Canadian legislation is under consideration at a parliamentary committee, to which the US social media company said it has not been invited to share its concerns.
"We believe the Online News Act misrepresents the relationship between platforms and news publishers, and we call on the government to review its approach," Meta Canada's head of media partnerships Marc Dinsdale said.
"In the face of adverse legislation based on false assumptions that defy the logic of how Facebook operates, we believe it's important to be transparent about the possibility that we may be forced to reconsider allowing news content sharing in Canada." 
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Canada's Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez, who introduced the bill, said in a statement on Friday that the government continued to have "constructive conversations" with Facebook.
"All we're asking the tech giants like Facebook to do is negotiate fair deals with news outlets when they profit from their work," he said.
The legislation proposes that digital platforms that have a "bargaining imbalance" with news businesses, measured by metrics like a firm's global revenue, must make fair deals that would then be assessed by a regulator.
Mr Dinsdale said news content was not a draw for Facebook users and did not bring significant revenue to the company.
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