Canada

Majority of Canadians opposed to Liberals controlling internet speech

The poll is in direct contrast to claims by Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault “a very high proportion of Canadians” want regulation.

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Published 2 days ago 

on March 18, 2021

ByDave Naylor

A clear majority of Canadians are against Liberal regulation of speech on the internet, their own government polling shows.

Blacklock’s Reporter said the Privy Council research is in direct contrast to claims by Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault “a very high proportion of Canadians” want regulation.

When asked: “Please give your opinion on the following statement: The government should restrict access to the internet and social media to combat the spread of misinformation about COVID-19,” a total 58 per cent disagreed, including 46 percent who “strongly disagreed.”

Opposition ranged from 63 percent of Atlantic Canadians to 62 percent of British Columbians, 61 percent of Albertans, 59 percent in Ontario, 56 percent in Saskatchewan and Manitoba and 51 percent in Québec.

Only four percent of people surveyed said they “strongly agreed” Parliament should regulate internet speech. 

Findings were drawn from a series of questionnaires with 16,829 people by Léger, which cost the government $248,343.

People also replied they had very little trust of the mainstream media, including the CBC.

Asked: “How much do you trust the following sources of information in their reporting about COVID-19?” a tenth of Canadians said they had little or “very little trust” in the CBC. 

The rate was 15 percent in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault has said he will introduce legislation, the first of its kind, to regulate non-criminal content on the internet including Facebook and Twitter. 

“A very high proportion of Canadians are asking the government to step in,” said Guilbeault said in January.

“It is very clear we will act, and we will soon table a bill.”

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
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