The federal government will give the CRTC nine months to force international streaming giants to contribute Canadian content.
In November 2020, the Minister of Heritage, Steven Guilbeault, presented a bill that modifies the Broadcasting law that would give the CRTC flexible new powers to regulate online platforms and he said a policy direction was on the way.
MobileSyrup has obtained a copy of the minister’s draft policy direction for the Canadian Radio, Television and Telecommunications Commission, which outlines the type of regulation expected by the government.
As first informed by the National mail, the policy guideline states that the CRTC will be tasked with ensuring “that online businesses must adequately contribute to the support and promotion of Canadian programming and Canadian creators.”
“To promote transparency, predictability, and regulatory coherence within this scheme, the CRTC must, after conducting a public procedure, establish a clear methodology that establishes an appropriate level of funding and determines what kinds of broadcasting companies should contribute. in some way that is proportional to this objective, ”the document states.
When the bill was introduced last year, the government stated that if online broadcasters such as Netflix and Spotify are required to contribute Canadian content at a rate similar to traditional broadcasters, their contributions to Canadian music and stories they could amount to as much as $ 830. million by 2023.
In addition, the policy direction indicates that the CRTC shall regulate the Canadian broadcasting system in a way that ensures that programming in English, French and indigenous languages is available and easy to discover.
In an emailed statement, Guilbeault stated that “this draft instruction demonstrates our government’s priorities and our commitment to ensuring that Francophone, Anglophone, Indigenous, disabled, racialized and LGBTQ2 + creators have the means to tell their own stories. , from his own perspective. “
“Recognizing ourselves, in the diversity of our identities, on screen and in music, is fundamental for the development of our communities and future generations. This is how our sense of belonging is forged and our cultural sovereignty is preserved ”.
Michael Geist, Canadian Research Professor in Internet Law and Electronic Commerce at the University of Ottawa, described in a blog post that nine months is a “completely unreal period of time.”
“Opposition parties know that this bill hurts consumers, competition, and what little money it could generate for creators in the next few years requires removing Canada from Canadian broadcasting policy. It’s time to take a stand and demand a rewrite. “