OTTAWA — Online streaming giants YouTube and TikTok are asking Canadian senators to take a sober second look at an online streaming bill that they say would cause significant harm to Canadian digital creators.
TikTok executive Steve de Eyre said in a Senate committee meeting on Wednesday evening that the federal Liberals’ Bill C-11 doesn’t just fail to protect digital creators from regulation, but makes them collateral damage.
He said the Senate should more explicitly exclude user-generated content from the bill, which was designed to modernize Canadian broadcasting legislation and bring online streaming platforms into the fold.
Senators should also consider rules around how Canadian content is identified, he said, saying much of the content that Canadians create on TikTok wouldn’t qualify as such.
The onus could end up on users to prove how Canadian they are, meaning that “established media voices and cultural voices” with more resources could end up at the front of the line, said de Eyre, who is the company’s director of public policy and government affairs in Canada.
YouTube executive Jeanette Patell told senators that the bill gives far too much discretion to Canada’s broadcasting regulators to make demands around user-generated content.
She said the provision that the regulator can consider whether someone has directly or indirectly generated revenue from the content would affect “effectively everything” on the platform.
“This is a global precedent,” said Patell, who is YouTube’s head of government affairs and public policy.
She warned that if other countries follow suit, Canadian creators, for whom 90 per cent of YouTube views come from outside the country, will have a harder time getting noticed.
“There’s nothing like this in the world for open platforms. It really puts the international audiences of creators at risk.”
Patell also warned that the regulator could require changes to the company’s algorithms, echoing concerns that music streaming giant Spotify raised during a hearing last week.
That fear is based on committee testimony from Ian Scott, the chairman of the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission.
Scott told senators in June that the regulator could ask platforms such as YouTube to “manipulate” their algorithms to produce particular outcomes.
At a meeting last week, Spotify’s head of artist and label partnerships for Canada, Nathan Wiszniak, said that affecting the way the platform generates recommendations for individual listeners would go against its raison d’être and could create negative feedback for the songs that are being recommended.
“Asking services to repeatedly bias recommendations against listener preferences strikes at the core trust we have built with our customers,” he said.
Some Quebec senators pushed back on the idea that requiring an algorithm to nudge users towards Canadian content is such a bad thing.
Sen. Julie Miville-Dechêne said that the bill requires companies to choose the means to make Canadian artists discoverable.
“Do you have means other than an algorithm to promote Canadian content?” she asked Patell in English. “Why are you afraid?”
Sen. René Cormier, for his part, noticed during his own use of YouTube that the algorithm was recommending anglophone music to listen to after Quebec artist Ariane Moffatt, whom he repeatedly name-dropped.
“I’m trying to understand why you can’t continue with the same type of music that I’m already listening to,” he said in French. “Why am I led elsewhere in the recommendations?”
Patell said YouTube is about “You,” and that its users train the algorithm to serve their needs — so she recommended that Cormier “teach” the platform what he’s looking for. When Canadians come looking for Canadian content, she said, “we absolutely want to serve that to them.”
Though de Eyre said that TikTok is “democratizing discoverability,” Bernadette Clement, a senator from Ontario, pointed out that “it’s not democratic if people don’t know how algorithms work.”
Patell and de Eyre responded by saying that their companies are making their source code and raw data available to researchers.
The streaming companies are recommending specific tweaks to the language of the bill that they say would assuage their concerns.
In June, before Parliament’s summer break, the House of Commons passed Bill C-11 with more than 150 amendments. The Senate decided not to rush its passage and instead to take a more thorough look this fall.
If senators decide to amend the bill, it would have to be sent back to the House of Commons for approval before it can become law.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 21, 2022.
Marie-Danielle Smith, The Canadian Press
Media Advisory: Memorandum of Understanding on Education to be Signed in Happy Valley-Goose Bay – News Releases – Government of Newfoundland and Labrador
The Honourable Lisa Dempster, Minister of Indigenous Affairs and Reconciliation and Minister of Labrador Affairs, and Scott Reid, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Education, will sign a Memorandum of Understanding on Education with the NunatuKavut Community Council tomorrow (Friday, September 30).
Minister Dempster and Parliamentary Secretary Reid will be joined by Todd Russell, President, NunatuKavut Community Council and Christina White, Director of Schools, Newfoundland and Labrador English School District at this signing.
The event will take place at Queen Peace Middle School, Happy Valley – Goose Bay beginning at 7:00 p.m.
Indigenous Affairs and Reconciliation
Black Market Releasing Launches With Screening Of Award-winning Filmmaker Sharon Lewis’ Queer Film “With Wonder”
TORONTO, ON – In celebration of LGBT History Month, Canada’s Black Market Releasing (BMR) officially launches with a screening of award-winning filmmaker Sharon Lewis’ Queer film “With Wonder” The soul-searching feature documentary will be followed by a talkback with the Cast & Crew at the Carlton Cinemas. BMR will formally announce the screening dates for the Canadian Screening Tour of “With Wonder” happening until 2023 in Cineplex Cinemas across Canada. The evening will be hosted by a Canadian dancer and choreographer best known for his regular appearances on the reality television series Canada’s Drag Race. Hollywood Jade. The screening will be followed by a Q&A moderated by award-winning storyteller and LGBT activist Rhoma Spencer; featuring the film’s producer Byron Wong of Iron Soul Media, Andreanna Chin and distribution experts Frances-Anne Solomon, Founder of CTMG and Distribution partner, Michael Dob bin of Capitol Media Group.
“With Wonder” is a love letter to God, asking the question, can you be a Christian and Queer. Queer activists from around the world, a Queer/Transgender Tamil-Sri Lankan-American comedian in LA; rural Queer folks in Jamaica and Black; Asian and South Asian Queer Clerics in London, San Francisco, and New York search for the answer on this journey. Their stories, though sometimes strained, are all connected by their Faith & Lewis’s poignant portrayal of their queerness. “With Wonder” is heartfelt and honest, delving into what for some might be uncomfortable conversations. The QPOC people in the film have come to terms and come out the other side, living their truth with the power of who they are.
“Since its inception the team at Black Market Releasing has stayed focused on its mission to find and release new and authentic stories from the BIPOC community. Entrance and recognition are necessary for BIPOC filmmakers. New films with diverse perspectives need a theatrical home. Simply. They need to be seen. We’ll be on tour across Canada, starting in Toronto, with the feature documentary “With Wonder”. It’s my sincere hope that introducing films like “With Wonder” to audiences everywhere, will lead to a better understanding and acceptance of the BIPOC community and their stories.”
WHAT: BLACK Market Releasing Official Launch with a special screening of of award-winning filmmaker Sharon Lewis’ Queer film “With Wonder”
WHEN: Oct 14, 2022
TIME: 6:30PM EST – Media Reception
7:30PM EST – Screening
LOCATION: Imagine Cinemas Carlton – 20 Carlton Street, Toronto
Black Market Releasing (BMR) is a part of the CaribbeanTales Media Group, founded by award winning Filmmaker and Academy member, Frances-Anne Solomon, and in partnership with Capital Motion Picture Group. BMR is a visionary new company, choosing bold, new, and authentic stories from diverse perspectives, introducing them to audiences around the world. BMR and The With Wonder Tour would not be possible without the support of Telefilm Canada. BMR is recognized by Telefilm as an authorized theatrical distributor in Canada.
Watch the official “With Wonder” trailer https://vimeo.com/686193132
Follow Black Market Releasing to learn more:
Media Inquiries & RSVP:
Sasha Stoltz Publicity:
Sasha Stoltz | Sasha@sashastoltzpublicity.com | 416.579.4804
Four Supportive Living Units To Open In Swift Current | News and Media – Government of Saskatchewan
Released on September 29, 2022
Swift Current residents living with brain injuries or disabilities will have improved access to affordable housing, thanks to investments from the Governments of Canada and Saskatchewan.
Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion, and Mental Health and Addictions Minister and Swift Current MLA Everett Hindley, on behalf of Social Services Minister and Minister Responsible for Saskatchewan Housing Corporation (SHC) Gene Makowsky, and representatives from Prairie Pioneers Independent Housing (PPIH) will celebrate the grand opening of four supportive housing units.
Through the Canada-Saskatchewan Bilateral Agreement under the National Housing Strategy, the project received $656,000 in funding.
The new four-plex is located at 302 Central Avenue South in Swift Current. These one-bedroom units include outdoor spaces and were designed to be suitable for individuals with brain injuries, with one designed for additional accessibility.
“Everyone deserves a safe and affordable place to call home,” said Hussen. “These new four-plex homes will provide stability and access to vital support services needed to live comfortably and with dignity. This is one of the ways our National Housing Strategy continues to ensure no one is left behind.”
“The Government of Saskatchewan knows that affordable housing helps people live in our communities to their fullest potential, and that some people may need additional support to live independently,” Hindley said. “That is why we are proud to support our partners at Prairie Pioneers Independent Housing as they develop housing options that offer residents dignity and security and contributes to their well-being, participation and success. I thank Prairie Pioneers for their important work that makes a difference in our community – and especially in the lives of their residents.”
“Upon acquiring the old Pioneer Lodge site, the board of Prairie Pioneer Independent Housing created a long-term vision to provide housing options for seniors with varying needs and who require specialized housing supports,” Prairie Pioneers Independent Housing CEO Deborah DeMars said. “This is our inaugural build on this new site and we look forward to continuing to build and create exciting housing options for seniors in our community.”
- PPIH has worked with the Saskatchewan Health Authority to determine the best way to house individuals with brain injuries. They have seen success when those with brain injuries live in safe, affordable and quiet supported living spaces, which inspire dignity and security.
- The four-plex is located near the PPIH administrative office, allowing management to have regular and informal contact with tenants who have higher needs.
- Pursuant to the National Housing Strategy (NHS), the Canada-Saskatchewan Bilateral Agreement will invest $449.9 million over the next 10 years, cost matched by the federal and provincial governments, in housing across the province. The Governments of Canada and Saskatchewan have reached agreement on the first three-year action plan.
- Canada’s National Housing Strategy (NHS) is a 10-year, $72+ billion plan that will give more Canadians a place to call home.
- As Canada’s authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. CMHC’s aim is that by 2030, everyone in Canada has a home they can afford, and that meets their needs. For more information, please visit cmhc.ca or follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.
- To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, visit www.placetocallhome.ca.
- Under the Canada-Saskatchewan Bilateral Agreement, housing is a key priority in providing a better quality of life for Saskatchewan families and communities. Since 2007, the Government of Saskatchewan, through SHC, has invested $786 million to develop more than 12,000 housing units and repair nearly 5,500 homes. SHC has also invested more than $61 million to build nearly 300 units in residential care homes, and $430 million to improve provincially-owned housing. To learn more, visit www.saskatchewan.ca.
For more information, contact:
Office of the Minister for Housing and Diversity and Inclusion
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
Saskatchewan Ministry of Social Services
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