Canada’s Senate has passed Bill C-11 (Online Streaming Act), which critics refer to as “the internet censorship bill,” along with several amendments.
The bill passed in the third reading with 43 votes in favor and 15 against, which means it is now inching ever closer to becoming law since in the next step it goes back to the House of Commons, which will consider the amendments.
The government proposed the bill as a way to amend the Broadcasting Act by modifying Canada’s broadcasting policy, and give the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) new powers as a regulator.
Opponents of the bill, including Conservative politicians and advocacy groups, however, see it as a way to increase the government’s ability to censor online speech it dislikes.
The effort to bring this legislation to life in Canada has quite a story behind it: initially, the Online Streaming Act, then known as Bill C-10, passed in the House of Commons in June 2021 but failed in the Senate.
It made a comeback as Bill C-11 in February 2022, got cleared by the House in June, and finally last week made it through the Senate.