Wake Up Canada !, New Censorship update on Bill c11, governments to censor their accountability

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This week the Canadian government has submitted a court document under the Online Streaming Act (Bill C-11), which critics say shows the law does the opposite of what was promised.

Originally, C-11 was promoted as a law that wouldn’t regulate user content on social media. However, this new court filing reveals that it actually does regulate such content, according to experts observing Canada’s online censorship laws.

C-11 has been controversial since it was proposed, debated, and eventually passed. The government had promised that it wouldn’t regulate third-party user content, but the court document now indicates otherwise.

C-11 is an updated version of C-10. Critics had said that while it fixed some issues from C-10, it didn’t address the most important ones.

The Online Streaming Act expands the powers of the Broadcasting Act, giving the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) authority over online content, including platforms like YouTube and podcast apps.

Despite government assurances, the court filing, which is a response to a challenge from Google, suggests that the Act does allow for regulation of user-uploaded programs on social media.

The main issue is whether Big Tech can be taxed and regulated without affecting the third-party content they host. This latest legal development isn’t encouraging for regular internet users in Canada.

Google challenged a CRTC ruling about online and streaming broadcasting fees, trying to protect its business. The Canadian government wants a share of the advertising dollars from user content, even though the ads are run by Google, not the content creators.

The court document states, "Contrary to Google’s position, the Act does allow for the regulation of user-uploaded programs on social media services, as long as certain conditions are met," as noted by Professor Michael Geist.

Last Month , Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau expressed concern that governments lack the tools needed to protect people from misinformation. This warning came as part of his push to pass the Online Harms Act (Bill C-63), a highly controversial piece of censorship legislation.

Bill C-63 has alarmed civil rights and privacy advocates due to its provisions on "hate speech," "hate propaganda," and "hate crime." These provisions would allow punishment not only before any offense is committed but also retroactively.

In a podcast interview with the New York Times, Trudeau defended C-63 as a necessary tool to combat hate speech, claiming that other methods to address online hate speech and related crimes have been exhausted.

Despite acknowledging that increased government control can lead to abuse, Trudeau argued for new legislative methods to protect people from misinformation, promoting C-63 as a balanced solution.

However, critics find it hard to see this "balance" in C-63, which is currently being debated in the House of Commons. If passed, the bill would allow authorities to place people under house arrest if they are deemed likely to commit "hate crime or hate propaganda" in the future—a chilling example of "pre-crime." Additionally, individuals could be banned from accessing the internet.

The bill aims to create new laws and amend the Criminal Code and the Canadian Human Rights Act, including a provision for life imprisonment for those who commit a hate crime alongside another criminal act. For hate speech violations, individuals could face fines of up to $51,000.

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