OTTAWA (LifeSiteNews) – Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government is crafting legislation that, if approved by Parliament, will make it illegal for social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter to host content that the government deems illegal.
The legislation will likely involve, according to the Globe and Mail, the creation of a new government regulator, what in Orwellian terms may prove to be a kind of “Ministry of Truth.” It is unclear how such legislation will square with the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms that “guarantees” to Canadians “freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication.”
CONTACT YOUR MP & SENATOR: Oppose Canadian government censorship of the internet! Sign the petition here.
The Globe and Mail reported Jan. 18 that the “federal government is making final revisions to its plans to act against online hate and harassment on social media platforms in light of the deadly U.S. Capitol Hill riots, and its proposed measures will be presented to cabinet in the coming weeks.”
“If approved by cabinet, the Canadian legislation could be introduced in Parliament as soon as February or March. The legislation is expected to be influenced by measures already in place in other countries, such as Germany, which requires social-media platforms to remove illegal content under tight deadlines and the threat of financial penalties.”
Trudeau outlined his plans to regulate social media in Canada in a Jan. 15 “mandate letter” to Public Safety Minister Bill Blair. Trudeau mandated Blair to “implement on a priority basis” a number of commitments, one of which included working with Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault and Justice Minister David Lametti to “take action on combatting hate groups and online hate and harassment, ideologically motivated violent extremism, and terrorist organizations, including to ensure the RCMP and Canadian Security Intelligence Service are equipped to combat this growing threat.”
“You will be supported in this work by the Minister of Diversity and Inclusion and Youth, the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development and the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry,” the mandate letter stated.
Previously in the letter, Trudeau told Blair that he must “ensure that Canadians have the information they need to keep themselves and their families safe.”
PETITION UPDATE (12/11/2020)
Right before Thanksgiving, YouTube deleted a LifeSite video of a distinguished Canadian physician protesting the "unfounded public hysteria" over COVID-19 and accused us of spreading "medical misinformation."
Our account was suspended, and we were prohibited from posting videos on our YouTube channel for one week. And, while that may not seem like a big deal, it's a huge deal for a news organization like LifeSite.
Then, earlier this week, YouTube again suspended our account – this time for two weeks – over an episode of The Bishop Strickland Show wherein Bishop Strickland said he would not take an unethical COVID-19 vaccine.
We were able to appeal the suspension, and our request was granted.
This means that in YouTube's three-strikes-and-you're-out content-policing, idea-cleansing scheme, we are back down to one strike. But, we still face the threat of losing our account permanently.
And, we're not the only ones.
In a recent turn of events, YouTube just announced that it will remove videos alleging widespread voter fraud in the 2020 presidential election.
But, what is YouTube afraid of? The truth???
Thankfully, however, there is a one, big bright spot on the horizon: 48 states filed suit against Facebook just this week.
And, although this seems like a step in the right direction, the draconian measures which YouTube just rolled out, which are already wielded by Twitter, are an assault against free speech.
So, the fight for freedom of speech against Big Tech goes on. And, we must do everything we can to protect it!
Please SIGN and SHARE this petition today!
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
PETITION UPDATE (11/18/2020)
Everyone thought the censorship by Big Tech corporations would decrease after the 2020 election, but the truth is that censorship is being felt just as much as it was before the election.
And, given the election outcome, perhaps Big Tech censorship now is even more consequential than it was before the election!
The two biggest social media platforms, Facebook and Twitter, and other Big Tech companies, are still censoring and suppressing stories and posts favorable to conservatives, and especially anything that has to do with election fraud.
Here are a few recent examples:
- Women for America First organized the March for Trump on November 14, which was shut down by Facebook, MailChimp and Eventbrite. Despite Big Tech’s best efforts to cancel the event, the march went on and gathered a huge crowd.
- Twitter has been suppressing a large number of President Trump’s Tweets. Most of his Tweets have been flagged arbitrarily with a warning stating: “This claim about election fraud is disputed."
Please READ this recent article about Big Tech's attempt to choke information conerning the recent Million MAGA March in Washington, DC: '5 things mainstream media won’t tell you about massive DC ‘Stop the Steal’ rally'
Then, please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition, which calls on the Congress, the president, and governors to defend freedom of speech as Big Tech continues their rampant censorship.
PETITION UPDATE (10/15/2020)
In a remarkable development, Republican Senators Ted Cruz and Lindsey Graham have announced that the Senate Judiciary Committee will be issuing subpoenas to Twitter's Jack Dorsey and Facebook's Mark Zuckerburg for their company's suppression of two critical expose news stories about how Hunter Biden and the Biden Family allegedly profited from business deals made because of Joe Biden's position as Vice President.
Please WATCH LifeSite's exclusive video of the announcement by Senator Ted Cruz below.
According to the Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Senator Lindsey Graham, the subpoenas will be issued next Tuesday, for hearings to be held on Friday of next week.
This is a MASSIVE development, and should be welcomed by those who champion freedom of speech.
Again, this is all happening because Twitter and Facebook refuse to allow their members to share stories which would be favorable to conservatives.
Here's the timeline:
Yesterday, Twitter and Facebook suppressed a NY Post story about how Hunter Biden allegedly profited from introducing a Ukrainian businessman to his then-Vice President father, Joe Biden. The story also alleges that Vice President Biden then subsequently pressured Ukrainian authorities to fire a prosecutor who was investigating the businessman's company.
And, just this morning, Twitter suppressed another expose by the NY Post alleging that the Biden Family improperly profitted from deals made with one of the largest Chinese energy companies because of Vice President Biden's position in government.
But, right after the story broke, Senator Cruz tried to share the latest story on Twitter and was blocked. Twitter says that they are blocking the stories because they claim that the information was obtained illegally. However, Twitter showed no problem allowing illegally obtained information about President Trump's tax returns to be shared.
Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition, which calls on the Congress, the president, and governors to defend freedom of speech as Big Tech continues their rampant censorship.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
'GOP senators decry Big Tech censorship of NY Post story exposing Biden corruption' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/gop-senators-decry-big-tech-censorship-of-ny-post-story-exposing-biden-corruption
PETITION UPDATE (9/17/2020)
Big Tech is out to kill free speech. LifeSite is out to protect it!
LifeSite has been digging deep into the many claims of liberal bias and selective censorship of pro-life, pro-family, and conservative voices on social media.
And, we are now launching our new series 'Uncensored: Big Tech vs. Free Speech', which will unpack how the actions of Big Tech censors actually affect conservative and Christian organization and individuals.
Please WATCH the first video in our series featuring Brigitte Gabriel, the Founder of ACT For America, one of the nation's premier national security grassroots organizations.
Ms. Gabriel's organization, ACT For America, has been targeted by Big Tech especially in the manipulation of search results.
Big Tech “think[s] they are God and they are exercising their godly power over everybody else,” Gabriel explained. "Because in today's world, anytime you want to find out any information about somebody, what do you do? Google. You go to the internet to find out some information about them. When you research anything about somebody, the first thing that comes up [in the search results] is the Southern Poverty Law Center’s labeling of ‘hate groups.’”
“And who are the ‘hate groups’? Family Research Council is a hate group because they are pro-family. American Family Radio is a hate group…LifeSiteNews is a hate group. My organization is a hate group because we sound the alarm about terrorism and protecting our constitutional freedom. And so they try to character assassinate you. And they control the language.”
LifeSite's research shows that Facebook, Google, YouTube, Twitter, and others have become far too dangerous for democracy.
They can and do sway elections and public opinion in whatever direction they want, primarily by manipulating search results, tracking our online behavior, and by blocking truthful content from their platforms.
Today, LifeSite is starting to fight back, with facts and with stories of conservatives and Christians who are being negatively impacted by Big Tech's liberal bias.
Please continue to follow our 'Big Tech vs. Free Speech' series which aims to launch a new video each week for the next eight weeks.
And, please sign our petition demanding that Big Tech monopolies are broken up. Thank you!
ORIGINAL PETITION BACKGROUND TEXT:
The outrageous erasing of the White Coat Summit from the internet is only the latest in a long series of brazen acts of censorship against conservatives and all those who support legitimate free speech.
You may agree or disagree with the efficacy of Hydroxychloroquine against the coronavirus, but everyone should agree on this point:
No Big Tech company should have the power to erase from the internet the medical opinions of licensed practicing doctors simply because they do not like what they have to say about the coronavirus or their experience treating it. Americans and other free peoples do not need leftist computer programmers deciding what the best course of medical treatment is for them.
Google/Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, Apple and their Big Tech friends want to control what you see, what you read, what you think, and ultimately, how you vote. Not only do they spend hundreds of millions of dollars on lobbying congress and buttering up big Washington DC think tanks, but now they brazenly and directly censor any content they don't want you to see.
Big Tech, like other interest groups, aggressively lobby to help their businesses thrive, but increasingly, Big Tech is using blatant internet censorship to impose its radical world view over those they consider to be "deplorables."
This must stop, but it won't unless we demand it as forcefully as legally possible. We believe that we have reached the point were Big Tech must be broken up if legitimate free speech is going to survive and continue to thrive on the internet.
Please sign our petition to demand real consequences for Big Tech's suppression of legitimate free speech.
In 2016, emails revealed by Fox News' Tucker Carlson proved that Google tried to influence the election by affecting voter turnout. Thankfully they failed. But they didn't give up. Instead, they have been preparing and testing how to manipulate information to continue to abuse their monopolistic power.
In 2018, Google/Youtube et. al. succeeded in manipulating the Irish abortion referendum by blacklisting pro-life videos, manipulating pro-life search terms and results and intentionally withholding pro-life information. Again, this is not an opinion or a conspiracy theory, Project Veritas obtained first hand information proving the intentional censorship by Big Tech.
And the Coronavirus has just made things worse. You see, scared people are more easily manipulated into giving up their freedom of speech. Children are being kept from going to school, tens of millions of Americans are out of work, and rioting has broken out in most major American cities.
Now, more than ever, freedom of speech is necessary to secure all of our freedoms. Freedom of speech is crucial to truly exercise the freedom to vote for the person that best represents one's own views, or the freedom to decide what course of medical treatment to accept - especially the decision to control what vaccines are administered to our children.
Some experts, like Dr. Robert Epstein, a behavioral psychologist who has testified before congress against Big Tech believes that we may already be too late to control Big Tech's tyrannical control over information.
President Trump took a step in the right direction with his Executive Order calling for increased regulation of Big Tech. But much more can be done and needs to be done right now.
In an era where almost everything is polarized, there is an overwhelming support for breaking up the Big Tech monopolies. A recent Pew poll found that 75% of Americans believe that Big Tech companies have too much influence.
It is time to bring serious accountability to Big Tech for their attempts to use their monopolies to kill free speech.
It is time to break up Big Tech.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Google, Facebook, Twitter shut down ‘frontline’ US doctors who promote ‘cure for COVID’ - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/google-facebook-twitter-shut-down-frontline-us-doctors-who-promote-cure-for-covid?utm_source=featured&utm_campaign=standard
Americans overwhelmingly agree Big Tech has too much power: Pew poll - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/americans-overwhelmingly-agree-big-tech-has-too-much-power-pew-poll
Leaked Google employee's email reveals effort to boost Latino vote, surprise that some voted for Trump - https://www.foxnews.com/tech/leaked-google-employees-email-reveals-effort-to-boost-latino-vote-surprise-that-some-voted-for-trump
Undercover video proves Google interfered in Irish abortion referendum - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/americans-overwhelmingly-agree-big-tech-has-too-much-power-pew-poll
“Now more than ever, Canadians are relying on journalists and journalism for accurate and timely news, especially in the face of a concerning spread of misinformation. I expect you to foster a professional and respectful relationship with journalists to ensure that Canadians have the information they need to keep themselves and their families safe,” the letter stated.
Liberal Member of Parliament Arif Virani, who is parliamentary secretary to Justice Minister Lametti and who was responsible for consultations on the proposed legislation, told the Globe and Mail that now is the time for government to regulate social media.
“There is a sense of greater urgency,” he said. “Obviously what happened in the United States … really has put this back at the forefront of people’s minds. But it’s not as if this is just a uniquely American phenomenon.”
Canadian Heritage Minister Guilbeault was originally mandated by Trudeau in 2019 to “create new regulations for social media platforms, starting with a requirement that all platforms remove illegal content, including hate speech, within 24 hours or face significant penalties. This should include other online harms such as radicalization, incitement to violence, exploitation of children, or creation or distribution of terrorist propaganda.”
According to a recent briefing note from Guilbeault’s department, the Liberal government will use a “comprehensive approach with the tabling of a bill in early 2021 that will apply to the various platforms (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.).”
“Social media platforms,” the briefing note continued, “can … be used to threaten, intimidate, bully and harass people, or used to promote racist, anti-Semitic, Islamophobic, misogynistic and homophobic views that target communities, put people’s safety at risk and undermine Canada’s social cohesion or democracy.”
Guilbeault alarmed free-speech advocates last February when he stated that the Trudeau government was considering forcing online news websites along with social media platforms to obtain a government license to operate in Canada. He later walked back the comments after widespread backlash, stating that the Liberal government has “no intention to impose licensing requirements on news organizations,” nor will it “regulate news content.” A controversial Liberal government report titled “Canada’s communications future: Time to act,” all the same recommended a media registry for news outlets in Canada.
LifeSiteNews reported in September that the Liberal government had already drafted documents related to regulating the internet in Canada that were being kept tightly guarded.
The Canadian government’s plan to regulate free speech did not escape notice from American conservative commentators. Fox News host Tucker Carlson heavily criticized the proposal on his show last week.
“Well, this is all moving pretty fast, it always does move pretty fast, but don’t you worry; it’s for your safety,” said Carlson.
“Up in Canada, the Heritage Minister just announced this week that that country will introduce new regulations to ban social media posts that are deemed ‘hurtful’ or ‘offensive.’ ‘We want to protect Canadians online,’ the Minister explained.”
“Of course, they want to protect themselves, sorry, protect you by protecting themselves from criticism from you. See how that works? Right. You’re protected when you can’t speak.”
Our inglorious ���� Minister of Heritage makes the news… pic.twitter.com/IVNTvAAnqs
— Debbi Teplitz (@DTeplitzer) January 16, 2021
Toronto Sun journalist Lorrie Goldstein said Canadians should be “very afraid” of Trudeau’s plans to regulate free speech.
“Given that we already have criminal and civil laws to deal with these issues (racism, bullying, etc.), it appears what the Liberals really want to target is speech they think ‘undermines Canada’s long-standing commitment to diversity.’ That is, speech that offends Liberals,” he wrote.
“Can you imagine a world where social media companies would have 24 hours to take down ‘illegal’ postings that allegedly undermine the Liberals’ definition of ‘diversity’ or face ‘significant financial penalties,’ if not criminal prosecution, to say nothing of what happens to the person posting the ‘illegal’ tweets or other comments,” he added.
Lawyer Jay Cameron, litigation manager for the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms, recently told LifeSiteNews that whatever the intention of the government might be regarding regulating the internet, at the end of the day, free speech will suffer.
“When the Federal Liberals announce with great fanfare that they are going to tackle ‘online hate,’ what they really mean is that they intend to censor legal speech they and their supporters disagree with. When you start asking questions what you quickly realize is that what the Federal Liberals mean by ‘online hate speech’ is really ‘speech online that they don’t like’ and is disagreeable to their supporters because it departs from progressive orthodoxy,” Cameron said.
“Canada already has a Criminal Code prohibition against hate speech, but it has rigorous defences built into it and prosecution requires consent from the Attorney General. The Heritage Minister knows that the speech he wants to go after is legal and cannot be prosecuted under section 319 of the Criminal Code. So he wants to create a new tool to prevent speech that is otherwise legal,” he added.
Cameron said that in Canada, section 2(b) of the Charter protects the right of citizens to have their own thoughts and beliefs and to express them. “This includes ‘thoughts, beliefs and opinions’ the Heritage Minister does not like,” he said.
“In other words, the reason Canadians have a Constitution in the first place is to protect them from authoritarian politicians like Stephen Guilbeault,” Cameron added.
The Honourable Steven Guilbeault – Minister of Canadian Heritage
15 Eddy Street, 12th Floor
Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0M5
Email: [email protected]