Canada Asks Citizens, Stakeholders for Input on New Online Content Regulation

Canada Asks Citizens, Stakeholders for Input on New Online Content Regulation

OTTAWA — The Canadian government is inviting “stakeholders and Canadians” to submit comments regarding a current proposal to regulate online content, which was prompted by the recent parliamentary hearings targeting Pornhub and its parent company, MindGeek.

The call for comments — which includes an invitation to both international “stakeholders” (including religiously motivated anti-porn activist organizations like NCOSE and Exodus Cry) and all Canadian citizens — starts with a statement that although “social media platforms and other online communications services play a vital and important role in Canada’s society and economy,” they can also “be abused and used to incite hate, promote violence and extremism or for other illegal activity.”

“The Government of Canada is committed to taking meaningful action to combat hate speech and other kinds of harmful content online, including child sexual exploitation content, terrorist content, content that incites violence, and the non-consensual sharing of intimate images,” the call for comments continues.

“The Government is asking for written submissions from Canadians on its proposed approach to make social media platforms and other online communications services more accountable and more transparent when it comes to combating harmful content online.”

The current proposal for “a new legislative and regulatory framework” includes creating new government-imposed content moderation rules for “how social media platforms and other online services must address harmful content," managed by a new politically-appointed bureaucracy.

Canadians and “stakeholders” can now give their opinion on “which entities would be subject to the new rules; what types of harmful content would be regulated; new rules and obligations for regulated entities; and two new regulatory bodies and an Advisory Board to administer and oversee the new framework and enforce its rules and obligations.”

Opening the Door to Blanket Censorship

The very broad mention of “types of harmful content” is fleshed out by a statement in the proposal documents’ “Technical Paper,” instructing commenters that ”the concept of non-consensual sharing of intimate images should consider criminal law offenses in this area set out in the Criminal Code, in a manner adapted to the regulatory context, with the intent to capture the communication of an intimate image of a person that the person depicted in the image or video did not give their consent to distributing, or for which it is not possible to assess if a consent to the distribution was given by the person depicted in the image or video.”

That last clause (“for which it is not possible to assess if a consent to the distribution was given by the person depicted in the image or video”) opens the door to a blanket ban of all adult material based on the vague notion of “what is possible to assess” about consent by merely viewing a video.

Groups like NCOSE and Exodus Cry, and anti-porn activists like Laila Mickelwait (who, as XBIZ has reported, was invited earlier this year to testify before the Canadian Parliament) have long argued that since neither age nor consent can be verified by merely watching a video or image, all sexual content online should be subject to takedowns. Long-standing First Amendment and free speech arguments, they allege, are not applicable because of vague anti-“human trafficking” carveouts, including FOSTA-SESTA.

The Canadian Government is inviting stakeholders and Canadians who wish to participate in the discussion to submit comments by email to pch.icn-dci.pch@canada.ca.

The comment-gathering campaign is managed by the Digital Citizen Initiative of the Department of Canadian Heritage, which can also be contacted at (819) 997-0055, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (PDT).

Copyright © 2024 Adnet Media. All Rights Reserved. XBIZ is a trademark of Adnet Media.
Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission is prohibited.

More News

Bemefi.com Launches Through YourPaysitePartner

Bemefi.com, the official website of fetish and gonzo studio Bemefi Video, has launched through YourPaysitePartner (YPP).

OnlyFans CEO: 'We're Very Proud of Our Adult-Content Creators'

The Financial Times has published an interview with OnlyFans CEO Keily Blair, in which she discusses the popular creator platform and her current vision for the company, and explicitly states that the company is “very proud” of its adult content creators.

Jasmine Teaa Is LoyalFans' 'Featured Creator' for March

LoyalFans has named Jasmine Teaa as its Featured Creator for March.

FSC Submits Statement for the Record to U.S. Congress About Financial Discrimination

The Free Speech Coalition has submitted a statement for the record to Congress, detailing the ways in which Treasury regulations aimed at preventing financial crime may be unintentionally leading to de-banking adult businesses and workers.

VRPorn.com Releases 2023 'Annual Report'

VRPorn.com has released its Annual Report, highlighting tendencies and popular search terms on the site in 2023.

Aylo Responds to Canada's Privacy Commissioner Report on User-Generated Content Protocols

Aylo has released a statement responding to a report released by Canada’s privacy commissioner, regarding a complaint about user-generated content.

PASS Adds Indie Producer Fivestar to Board of Directors

The Performer Availability Screening Service (PASS) has tapped independent producer Fivestar to join its board of directors.

Kentucky Republicans Revive 'Public Health Crisis' Claims to Justify Anti-Porn Bills

Republican lawmakers in the Kentucky House and Senate are renewing claims that adult content is part of a “public health crisis,” to justify introducing matching copycat versions of the age verification legislation being sponsored around the country by anti-porn religious conservative activists.

Segpay's Cathy Beardsley Named Among American Banker's 2024 'Most Influential Women in Payments'

Segpay CEO Cathy Beardsley has been named one of American Banker’s 2024 Most Influential Women in Payments.

Texas' AG Ken Paxton Sues Aylo Over Controversial Age Verification Law

Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton has filed a lawsuit against Aylo, alleging the company is in violation of Texas’ controversial age verification law, which mandates that adult websites post a “health warning” perpetuating religious anti-porn propaganda myths.

Show More