Liberals set to reject Senate amendments on online censorship Bill C-11

Critics say that the move proves the true intent of the legislation: To regulate the internet using the iron fist of censorship.

Liberals set to reject Senate amendments on online censorship Bill C-11
The Canadian Press / Adrian Wyld
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Bill C-11 was recently sent back to the House of Commons (HoC) for approval after the Canadian Senate made several amendments to lessen the infringing scope of the Liberal's proposed legislation.

The bill is the first of its kind in Canada. Bill C-11 An Act to Amend the Broadcasting Act, has been widely criticized as an Orwellian attempt to control the content Canadians can produce and access online.

Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez, who is the minister responsible for the bill – declined most of the proposed amendments made by the Senate, saying that they “created loopholes.”

This prompted law professor and critic Michael Geist to remind Minister Rodriguez that Canadian content creators are not loopholes.

Geist argues that this is disinformation and shows the true intent of the legislation: To retain power and regulate user content.

“The Senate amendment crafted by Trudeau-appointed Senators Simons and Miville-Duchêne took the government at its word that their objective was to ensure sound recordings on services such as Youtube were caught by the bill. Their amendment did that, while scoping out user content on sites such as TikTok that might be captured by virtue of the inclusion of indirect commercial revenue as a criteria for the CRTC to consider in the regulatory process,” a post by Geist reads.

Yet the rejection of this amendment means ambiguously worded, sweeping regulation of social media regulation by the Canadian Radio-television broadcasting Commission (CRTC).

"Canada [will be] the only country in the democratic world to engage in this form of user content regulation," Guist points out, assuming the bill will pass in the HoC thanks to the Liberal-NDP coalition government.

Liberal-appointed-Senator David Richards has previously drawn a chilling comparison between Bill C-11 and totalitarian regimes.

“In Germany, it was called the Ministry of National Enlightenment,” he said during the third Senate reading before stating that “Stalin again will be looking over our shoulder when we write.”

He thinks that the bill is “censorship being bundled up and sold to the public as ‘national inclusion,” and criticized it further for “creating compliance instead of greatness.”

Senator Richards even referred to the dystopian writings of George Orwell directly.

“Orwell said that we must resist the prison of self-censorship. This bill goes a long way to construct such a prison,” he said, continuing with unsettling parallels between this bill and dictatorships.

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