The publisher of a First Nations newspaper based in Six Nations of the Grand River, Ont., says she’s “extremely concerned” about the impact on Indigenous communities of Meta blocking news content in Canada.
“In many cases, they’re in very isolated areas and for Facebook to pull a stunt like this, it can cause so many problems for our people to get information to them,” Lynda Powless, publisher of Turtle Island News, told CBC Hamilton.
“First Nations are in precarious positions to begin with … these are communities that just even have problems getting to the internet.”
Meta — which owns Facebook and Instagram — began ending the availability of news on those sites in Canada earlier this summer in response to the passage in June of Bill C-18, the Online News Act, which takes effect by the end of this year.
Now links and content shared by Canadian news outlets on Meta’s sites can’t be viewed by people in Canada. Users in Canada also can’t view news from organizations outside of Canada.
Google has threatened similar action.
The Online News Act will force large social media platforms to negotiate compensation for Canadian news publishers when their content is shared. The government says C-18 is about ensuring tech companies pay their “fair share” to media organizations.
Meta has countered that the only reasonable way to comply with the bill is to end news access in Canada.
CBC/Radio-Canada and other news publishers and broadcasters have asked Canada’s Competition Bureau to investigate Meta’s decision to block news content, describing the social media giant’s actions as “anticompetitive.”
CBC/Radio-Canada’s corporate position is that the Online News Act will help level the playing field and contribute to a healthy news ecosystem in Canada “at a time when 80 per cent of digital ad revenue goes to Facebook and Google,” spokesperson Leon Mar has previously said.
WATCH: Wildfire evacuees frustrated, angry at Meta’s Canadian news ban
Meta has faced more criticism recently as wildfires have ravaged parts of the country and forced thousands of Canadians from their homes.
“Those fires affected a lot of First Nations communities that we service,” Powless said, adding that they have readers across the country.
In a statement to CBC Hamilton, Meta said the company has been “clear for many months that the broad scope of the Online News Act would impact the sharing of news content on our platforms.”
It said people across Canada can still use its platforms to “connect with loved ones and access information, which is how more than 70,000 people have marked themselves safe and over 1.5 million people have visited the Yellowknife and Kelowna Crisis Response pages on Facebook.”
‘It’s taking resources from an Indigenous newspaper’
Powless said Turtle Island News has used Facebook for live or breaking coverage in the past but hasn’t been able to do so since the news ban.
The Turtle Island News page doesn’t show any content at all and Powless said it happened without warning.
“How are we supposed to let our community know what’s happening in an urgent situation?” she said, adding that mainstream media outlets usually cover news Indigenous communities a day or two later than local Indigenous outlets.
She said the newsroom has tried to find ways around Meta’s efforts, but now the outlet is finding itself having to “re-train” readers about where to find news.
She said the newspaper is also developing an app.
“It’s taking resources from an Indigenous newspaper in a small Indigenous community,” Powless said, noting it has lost ad revenue.
She hopes Meta will back down and end its news ban.
“You have people who are fighting fires, all kinds of climate change issues in First Nations communities … we’re there and we can’t get the word out,” Powless said, speaking about Indigenous media outlets broadly.
“That’s a serious problem and the kind of problem that costs people’s lives.”
Committed To Closer Ties With India, Says Justin Trudeau Amid Row – NDTV
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Every Child Matters! The 3rd Annual Montreal March for the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation to take place on September 30
Members of the media are encouraged to schedule interviews 60-90 minutes in advance for background and preview stories.
Date: Saturday, September 30th, 2023
Time: 1pm (media spokespersons will be on-site at 11:30am)
Location: Parc Jeanne-Mance (near the Monument Cartier)
Montreal, September 28, 2023 – On Saturday, Montrealer’s will be gathering for the 3rd Annual March for the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. This year’s peaceful march is organized by The Native Women’s Shelter of Montreal and Resilience Montreal, and will highlight continued struggles for justice and dignity in Indigenous communities.
Since the first discovery of mass graves in 2021, searches across the country are ongoing near former Indian Residential Schools and that number has doubled.
Na’kuset, E.D. of NWSM: “This day needs to be more about challenging systemic discrimination, taking accountability, and creating justice. History will now have to be rewritten and we need your help with empowering Indigenous children.”
David Chapman, E.D. of Resilience Montreal: “The legacy of residential schools continues into the present. There is a significant over-representation of Indigenous people among the homeless population of Montreal. They are frequently the children of residential school survivors. Until this reality is taken seriously, we will not end homelessness.”
Ann Deer, Board Member of Resilience Montreal: “My vision is to build a safe community for the next seven generations.”
We call upon the community in the spirit of reconciliation, to join us in this walk with their friends, families, and allies to listen and learn from our speakers and walk in our moccasins. We encourage participants to bring their drums, posters, and banners.
Canadian Congress Announces National Transformation Campaign and Inaugural Nation Builder Awards at Canada Leadership Summit and Gala
Toronto, September 28, 2023 – The Canadian Congress is thrilled to announce its groundbreaking campaign for national transformation, which will be officially launched at the Canada Leadership Summit and Gala 2023. The event will take place from Friday, October 6th, 2023, to Sunday, October 8th, 2023, at the Hilton Toronto Airport Hotel, 5875 Airport Rd, Mississauga, ON L4V 1N1.The campaign’s kickoff event will feature a press conference hosted by the executives of the Canadian Congress on Inclusive Diversity & Workplace Equity, along with dignitaries and professionals who will be speaking throughout the three-day summit. According to Alex Ihama, the Executive Director of the Canadian Congress, “In the face of numerous crises, from elevated unemployment rates to increased violent crime and distressing suicide attempts, it is imperative that we address pressing issues. Despite heightened awareness of social justice, racism, discrimination, hate crimes, and mental health challenges continue at unprecedented levels. We believe it’s time to unite leaders from all backgrounds to strategize support for marginalized, minoritized, and racialized communities. It’s time to recognize those who work tirelessly on behalf of our nation’s citizens while inspiring and empowering others to build a brighter future.” Event Highlights: **- Friday, October 6, 2023, at 5:30 p.m.**: Summit Kickoff and Reception **- Saturday, October 7, 2023, at 7:30 a.m.**: National Prayer Breakfast **- Saturday, October 7, 2023, at 9:30 a.m.**: Workshops, Speeches, Panels **- Saturday, October 7, 2023, at 5:30 p.m.**: Nation Builder Awards & Gala **- Sunday, October 8, 2023, at 10:30 a.m.**: Canada Thanksgiving Day Service The event will honour twelve remarkable Canadians who have made extraordinary contributions to the nation and the cause of social justice. Awardees, speakers, and panellists include trailblazers such as:
- Hon. Jean Augustine, the first Black woman member of parliament in Canada and the one who made the motion for Black History Month to be recognized in Canada.
- Senator Don Oliver, the first Black male to sit in the Senate and the second Black Canadian appointed to the chamber.
- Dr. Wendy Cukier, the founder and academic director of the Diversity Institute at the Toronto Metropolitan University, the premier organization for social-justice-related research and data.
- Senator Bernadette Clement, the first female and Black mayor of Cornwall, Ontario; and Roberto Hausman, a humanitarian and advocate for the homeless across Canada.
- Senator Jane McCallum, a dentist and an advocate for health care and social justice issues, and the first Indigenous person and woman to serve as the new chancellor of Brandon University, Manitoba.
- Courtney Betty, the lead principal in the one-billion-dollar class action suit against the Government of Canada for decades of racism against its Black employees.
Sasha@sashastoltzpublicity.com or call 416.579.4804. About the Canadian Congress on Inclusive Diversity & Workplace Equity: The Canadian Congress on Inclusive Diversity & Workplace Equity is one of the largest and most distinguished social justice organizations organization committed to fostering inclusion, diversity, and equitable workplaces across Canada. Formed in 2020 only a few months after the murder of George Floyd in response to the critical need for an organization that can streamline the purposes of many other community organizations, institutions, and government agencies to foster inclusive diversity and workplace equity, the Canadian Congress has become a veritable force in the space of transformational leadership, social justice, human rights, and the empowerment of people across the nation. Known for a list of prestigious clientele and some of the largest inspiring, empowering and transformational events in Canada, bringing people together from all works of life to deliberate on socioeconomic and social justice issues, while equipping thousands of leaders, entrepreneurs, politicians, and other kinds of professionals together, the voice of Canadian Congress has been consistently sought after through its Executive Director, Nosakhare Alex Ihama, by the Parliament and also the Senate of Canada, as well as other major news outlets across the country and beyond.Others include Dr. Ardavan Eizadirad, a professor at Wilfrid Laurier University and Executive Director of Youth Association for Academics, Athletics, and Character Education (YAAACE) in the Jane and Finch community; Pauline Christine, the former president of the Black Business and Professional Association; Svetlana Ratnikova, the founder and head of Immigrant Women in Business (IWB), one of the largest organizations that are helping women immigrant to start and prosper in business upon arrival to Canada; and Drs. Peter and Pat Morgan, renowned global ambassadors for national transformation and unity. The Canada Leadership Summit and Gala 2023 promises a series of engaging workshops, inspirational speeches, and thought-provoking panel discussions centred around leadership, business, and community. Organizers invite individuals from all walks of life to join the forefront of change by registering at [www.canadaleadershipsummit.com]. Media Inquiries & Event RSVP please contact Sasha Stoltz Publicity at
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