Facebook and Google Pay are showing the way. COVID-19 has brought devastation in several business industries and Canadian news organization is not an exception.
Considering the present crisis, a Canadian media lobby group is asking the government to make social media giants Google Pay and Facebook pay for the news content that they share on their sites. Well, the plight has become more accurate for the media industry due to COVID-19 pandemic.
Daniel Bernhard, executive director of Friends of Canadian Broadcasting. Spoke to the finance committee Tuesday about the organization’s new WANTED campaign. According to him, Canadian news organizations get a share of the advertising revenue. For that, they are urging the government to make advertising “middlemen” such as Facebook and Google pay for the news content they aggregate.
Unfortunately, Google did not make any comment on this. On the other side, Facebook declined to comment on the campaign. A Facebook spokesperson said in an email that the company has provided funding to multiple Canadian news organizations.
People belonging to this industry are facing a hard time. Moreover, their credit card limit has been lowered.
Daniel Bernhard said, “Canadian journalism is in a death spiral” and COVID-19 is accelerating this spiral. He further added. “Advertising revenue has dropped and numerous local newspapers have shuttered for good, even as Canadians want and need news more than ever”.
The fact is that middleman agencies such as Facebook and Google Pay are earning a lot but, they are not doing anything good for the local media agencies. Bernhard said. “It’s middlemen like Facebook and Google that are getting the vast majority of the money. Even though they don’t employ a single journalist”.
In addition to this, Australia and France had instated a rule where media giants including Facebook and Google Pay have to pay news sites for their content. Bernhard wants Canada to follow in the footsteps of Australia and France.
Australia’s competition bureau announced it would force Facebook and Google Pay to share advertising revenue with Australian news agencies. After negotiations between the two parties broke down in April, 2020. France’s competition bureau also ordered Google to work out a repayment agreement with French news agencies. And publishers for using pieces of their content for free on its site.
Media experts in Canada said. “At the time of the decisions that these changes are indicative of a momentum building in the international media landscape, but that similar changes in Canada are not on the horizon”.