Google has announced that it will no longer display Canadian news links in its search engine. This decision is in response to a new law requiring digital platforms to pay local news outlets. Last month, Meta, Facebook’s parent company, also removed news content from its platform in Canada.
The Canadian government passed the Online News Act in June, aiming to help local news outlets generate revenue from platforms that use their content. The law allows news publishers to negotiate payment deals with platforms like Google and Facebook or seek arbitration.
Google expressed concern about the law’s uncertainty, fearing potential “uncapped financial liability.” The company also believes the law could hinder Canadians’ ability to find news online.
The government expressed disappointment with Google’s decision but remains confident that the law will ultimately benefit Canadian news publishers.
The removal of Canadian news from Google search will significantly impact the visibility of local news outlets. As the most popular search engine in Canada, Google drives substantial traffic to news websites. Losing this traffic could heavily affect revenue.
The long-term consequences of Google’s decision are still unclear. The company expressed willingness to collaborate with the government for a fair solution. However, the permanent removal of Canadian news from Google search remains a possibility.
Google and Meta’s removal of news content in Canada reflects the escalating tensions between digital platforms and news publishers. Both sectors vie for advertising revenue and face increasing regulatory scrutiny worldwide. This conflict is likely to persist in the future.