BPC Bulletin: The Christchurch Call to Action and Canada's Digital Charter

News Reports and Commentary Selected by Franklin Carter of the Book and Periodical Council’s Freedom of Expression Committee

 

The Canadian government is taking new steps to counter hate speech, misinformation and other threats on the Internet.

REPORTAGE

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently announced the Canadian government’s intention to introduce a charter to combat hate speech, misinformation and electoral interference on the Internet.

Mr. Trudeau spoke at VivaTech — a conference of the world’s technology leaders — in Paris, France, on May 16, 2019.

Catherine Levesque of the Canadian Press reports:
https://www.thespec.com/news-story/9358644-canada-introducing-digital-charter-to-combat-hate-speech-misinformation/

On May 15, Prime Minister Trudeau, the prime minister of New Zealand, the president of France and other leaders adopted the Christchurch Call to Action. It is a “pledge to eliminate terrorist and violent extremist content online.”

Read the press release of the Canadian Prime Minister’s Office:
https://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/canada-joins-christchurch-call-to-action-to-eliminate-terrorist-and-violent-extremist-content-online-892972597.html

Salimah Shivji of CBC News reports:
https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/trudeau-christchurch-online-terrorism-ardern-1.5135322

Howard Solomon of IT World Canada reports:
https://www.itworldcanada.com/article/sixteen-countries-sign-promise-to-fight-spread-of-online-extremist-content/418073

Two weeks later, Mr. Trudeau talked about the dangers of regulating social media on the Internet. Government intervention should be a last resort, he said.

Mr. Trudeau spoke at the Open Government Partnership Summit in Ottawa on May 29, 2019.

Joan Bryden of the Canadian Press reports:
https://nationalpost.com/pmn/news-pmn/canada-news-pmn/trudeau-warns-internet-regulation-could-be-used-to-repress-citizens-free-speech

CANADIAN COMMENTARY

In the National Post, Chris Selley comments:
https://nationalpost.com/opinion/chris-selley-in-canada-whatever-politicians-might-say-free-speech-wins

At the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, Cara Zwibel comments:
https://ccla.org/breaking-digital-charter/

In The Post Millennial, Libby Emmons and Barrett Wilson comment:

https://www.thepostmillennial.com/no-theres-no-rise-in-hate-theres-a-rise-in-panic/

In The Post Millennial, Shane Miller comments:
https://www.thepostmillennial.com/the-digital-charter-and-the-death-of-free-speech-in-canada/

In The London Free Press, Anthony Furey comments:
https://lfpress.com/opinion/columnists/furey-the-digital-charter-talks-about-restricting-social-media-but-offers-few-specifics/wcm/de7c97c8-3962-4e30-af34-2b06cd590961

In Toronto, The Star editorializes:
https://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorials/2019/05/15/christchurch-call-is-a-good-step-in-fighting-extremism.html

In The Tyee, Zak Vescera comments:
https://thetyee.ca/Analysis/2019/05/13/How-To-Fight-Online-Hate-Protect-Free-Speech/

In the Times Colonist, Geoff Johnson comments:
https://www.timescolonist.com/opinion/columnists/geoff-johnson-hate-speech-or-free-speech-there-s-a-vital-difference-1.23819934

In the National Post, Chris Selley comments:
https://nationalpost.com/opinion/chris-selley-government-has-no-business-regulating-social-media

FOREIGN COMMENTARY

In The Atlantic, Heidi Tworek comments:
https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2019/05/germany-war-radio-social-media/590149/

Binoy Kampmark of the Eurasia Review comments:
https://www.eurasiareview.com/16052019-fantasies-of-humanity-the-christchurch-pledge-and-a-regulated-internet-oped/

At the World Socialist Web Site, Will Morrow comments:
https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/05/16/chri-m16.html

At the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Matt Field comments:
https://thebulletin.org/2019/05/social-media-regulation-and-its-discontents/

 

The Book and Periodical Council was formed in 1975 as the Book and Periodical Development Council to provide a venue for members to discuss industry issues, address mutual concerns and undertake projects for the benefit of Canadian writing and publishing.

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