The News/Media Alliance applauds the Canadian government for today’s deal with Google for its payment for the use of valuable news content on its Search platform. The amount negotiated is reported to be $100 million per year, down from the $172 million called for by the Canadian government.
The Canadian government passed legislation (C-18, the Online News Act) earlier this year that requires Big Tech platforms such as Google and Meta to pay news publishers for the use of their content. The Online News Act is due to take effect in December.
“This is a very big win for Canadian news publishers and shows that Google will commit to paying fair market value for quality journalism,” stated News/Media Alliance President & CEO Danielle Coffey. “This proves, yet again, that legislation is the only path to sustained right to payment for the fair market value of our quality content. The U.S. must stand up for our vibrant journalism industry and not fall behind other countries. Big Tech cannot continue to harm local news. Congress must protect our democracy and our constitutional right to a free press by implementing legislation that will help sustain quality journalism in America.”
Canada is the latest in a string of countries around the world that have recognized the need to protect quality journalism and passed legislation requiring the tech platforms to pay news publishers for use of their content, including Australia, the United Kingdom and the European Union.
The Canada bill and today’s deal build momentum for the California Journalism Preservation Act (CJPA – AB 886, introduced earlier this year by California Assemblymember Buffy Wicks (D-Oakland)) — the goal of which will be discussed at an informational hearing next week — and the federal Journalism Competition and Preservation Act (JCPA) (S.1094, reintroduced in March by Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota) and John N. Kennedy (R-Louisiana)) in the U.S. The Senate Judiciary Committee voted favorably in June for the JCPA, which would allow digital journalism providers to collectively negotiate with Google and Facebook for fair compensation for use of their valuable content.
The JCPA has broad support, not only in Congress in both the House and the Senate, but also from over 300 consumer interest groups, unions, conservatives, advocacy groups and third-party organizations that have sent letters of support for the JCPA to the bill sponsors.
The tech platforms are the dominant distributors of news content, reaping tremendous financial benefit without compensation to those who create the content. They also capture the majority of U.S. digital ad revenue, leaving local publishers with little to reinvest in the production of high-quality journalism.