Heritage Minister indicates Bill C-10 could apply to accounts that have a large following

The CRTC may have regulating powers related to the discoverability of online content

Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault says the CRTC may regulate accounts that have a large following under Bill C-10.

Although the government has stated that user-generated content won’t be subject to regulation under Bill C-10, Guilbeault told CTV News in an interview that if an account has millions of viewers, the CRTC may have regulating powers related to the discoverability of online content.

“What we want to do, this law should apply to people who are broadcasters or act like broadcasters,” Guilbeault told CTV News.

“So if you have a YouTube channel with millions of viewers, and you’re deriving revenues from that, then at some point the CRTC will be asked to put a threshold. But we’re talking about broadcasters here, we’re not talking about everyday citizens posting stuff on their YouTube channel.”

Guilbeault outlined that since this won’t impact the majority of users, the government still says that the bill won’t affect individual users.

The minister did not elaborate on what the threshold would be and if it would be related to factors such as a specific number of followers or advertising revenue.

The comments from Guilbeault follow intense backlash over the past two weeks from the public and experts who have said the bill would infringe on free speech and expression.

Last week, Guilbeault tried to calm these concerns by announcing that the government is going to bring forward another amendment to Bill C-10 to make it clear that the CRTC won’t be regulating social media posts but that the commission would still have powers regarding the discoverability of Canadian content online.

Image credit: @StevenGuilbeault

Source: CTV News

Update 10/05/2021 10:00am ET: The minister has backtracked on these comments and says social media users ‘will never’ be regulated.