Google voices concerns over Bill C-10’s possible impact on creators and viewers

The search giant says the legislation’s discoverability requirement will have consequences

Google has voiced its concerns about the possible consequences of Bill C-10’s impact on creators and Canadian viewers on YouTube.

Bill C-10 would empower the CRTC to set discoverability requirements for Canadian creators, which means that it could require a certain amount of Canadian content to appear in users’ recommended videos.

In a new blog post, the tech giant outlined that its concern that the legislation’s discoverability requirement will likely negatively affect both creators and viewers.

“If someone is searching for Canadian content, we will show them Canadian content. And we’ll continue to do so especially if that person likes or engages with that content. But if a student is researching American history or someone is looking for the best way to fix a flat tire, we want to make sure they have access to the most relevant content for their needs,” Google notes.

The search giant outlines that if Bill C-10 goes into effect, Canadians won’t see video suggestions based on personal preferences, but would instead be recommended video based on what the government decides is “Canadian.”

“The rules around what is considered Canadian content are complex and it is very difficult to qualify. This stands to impact all creators but we are especially concerned about the impact on new and emerging creators as they will be up against players who have been following these rules for decades.”

Further, the search notes that over 90 percent of watch time of Canadian content comes from viewers outside of Canada, which shows that Canadians’ content is successful worldwide.

Google ends the blog post by stating that modernizing broadcasting for the digital is worthwhile, but that it shouldn’t come at the expense of Canadians creators and viewers.

Bill C-10 has been met with backlash from experts and the public alike over the past few weeks with calls to stop the bill altogether or to make amendments to ensure Canadians’ free speech and expression rights are protected.