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The Trudeau Liberals’ new proposed censorship provisions would introduce a chief internet censor that would have wide-ranging powers, including the ability to block websites and investigate anonymous complaints, cabinet said yesterday. According to Blacklock’s Reporter, Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault said the bill would deal with the “spread [of] potentially illegal and abusive content,” and that regulation needed to be “consistent and transparent.” The bill, which would be introduced in fall of 2021, would ” prioritize a safe, open and inclusive internet where Canadians feel they can express themselves without being victimized or targeted by certain kinds of harmful content.” The chief censor position, or “Digital Safety Commissioner,” would provide “advice on content moderation” and “and issue compliance orders on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other service providers under threat of $25 million fines,” reports Blacklock’s. “Definitions would draw upon existing law including current offences and definitions in the Criminal Code, but they would be modified in order to tailor them to a regulatory as opposed to criminal context,” wrote staff.

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