Trudeau says he's bothered by Google preventing some Canadians from accessing news
OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he is bothered that Google is limiting access to news for some Canadians.
Trudeau says the tech giant has decided they would rather prevent Canadians from accessing news than pay journalists for the work they do.
He added that he thinks it's a "terrible mistake."
Google confirmed earlier this week it is blocking access to online news for less than four per cent of its Canadian users, in what the company says is a short-lived test in response to the Liberal government's Online News Act, which it opposes.
The bill would require digital giants such as Google and Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram, to negotiate deals to compensate Canadian media companies for displaying or providing links to their news content.
The Parliamentary Budget Officer has said the bill would compensate digital platforms by covering 30 per cent of their costs for creating news.
Trudeau made the comments in a brief statement following a press conference in Toronto on Friday.
He began by telling reporters there is an issue that's been bothering him.
"It really surprises me that Google has decided that they would rather prevent Canadians from accessing news, than actually paying journalists for the work they do," Trudeau said.
"I think that's a terrible mistake, and I know Canadians expect journalists to get paid for the work they do."
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 24, 2023.
The Canadian Press