Online streaming services must now pay into fund for Canadian news, content

By The Canadian Press

Online streaming services like Netflix and Spotify are being told they must start contributing money toward local news and the production of Canadian content.

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has directed foreign streamers today to pay five per cent of their annual Canadian profits into a fund.

“Based on the public record, the Commission is imposing requirements on online streaming services. Specifically, the Commission will require online streaming services that make $25 million or more in annual contributions revenues and that are not affiliated with a Canadian broadcaster to contribute five per cent of those revenues to certain funds,” a news release published on Tuesday states.

That fund will be devoted to producing local TV and radio news, Indigenous content, French-language content, and content created by those with a diverse background.

The CRTC says the fund is expected to inject about $200 million into Canada’s broadcasting system every year.

Those responsible for paying would be companies that are not affiliated with a Canadian broadcaster that make at least $25 million from Canadian broadcasting.

The new directive is meant to level the playing field between tech giants and traditional broadcasters, which already contribute to producing Canadian content.

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