In Canada, Justin Trudeau’s increasingly authoritarian administration has ordered that podcasting sites as well as streaming networks register with the government’s broadcasting regulating organization and aggressively encourage “meaningful donations to Canadian and Indigenous subject matter.”
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) secretly revealed this week a significant change to the way independent media is run in the nation, which may pose an additional danger to freedom of speech.
Under what the CRTC called a “regulatory plan aimed at modernizing Canada’s communication framework,” streaming service providers in Canada that make at least $10 million a year will have to register with the broadcasting regulators by November 28th. This could mean that online content could be subject to the same rules as content broadcast on TV and radio.
The government said that people who make or share podcasts online will not be required to register with the government. Only companies that offer podcast services online will have to. Online platforms that only offer video games or ebooks will also be left out of the system.
“We are building a modern framework for broadcasting that can change as things happen. To do that, we need a lot of people to get involved and good public data. We appreciate the large number of people who participated in this first phase, and we are also looking forward to hearing a range of points of view at our contributions proceeding in November,” stated Vicky Eatrides, CEO of the CRTC.
The CRTC said that it would not only follow the rules for broadcasting, but it would also try to get online sites to actively back Canadian and “Indigenous” material.
Free speech supporters are worried about the news. Independent writer Glenn Greenwald said it will make “one of the world’s harshest online censorship schemes” even bigger.
“Here in Canada, Trudeau wants to silence free speech. Very shameful,” Elon Musk, CEO of X, said.
“It’s true that Canada has never allowed ‘free speech,’ but as of right at this moment, it’s impossible to even host a podcast that the government of Canada disapproves of.” The left-wing podcaster Jimmy Dore made the following statement about Trudeau: “He’s a real Nazi, not just an advocate of Nazi,” in response to the Canadian Parliament’s standing ovation a few weeks earlier for a 98-year-old Ukrainian who served in Nazi Germany during World War II.
A former vice presidential contender for the Libertarian Party, Spike Cohen made the following joke: “Canadian podcasters may not be permitted to inform their fellow citizens the details of Justin Trudeau and his Parliament giving a standing ovation in honor of a Nazi war veteran again.”
Under Trudeau’s radical government, Canada has made a lot more language illegal. People are even being arrested for seemingly small offenses like “misgendering” transgender people or saying that there are in fact only two genders.
Some people have pointed out that the prime minister along with the remaining members of the Canadian parliament might have broken the nation’s hate speech laws when they called a Waffen SS soldier a “hero” of Canada. There are laws against “promoting hatred” and “promoting antisemitism,” which can get you as much as two years in prison.