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Debunked: The Canadian government hasn't banned the British outlet GB News

Meta has been blocking all news content in Canada in response to a proposed new law.

POSTS ONLINE HAVE falsely claimed that GB News has been banned in Canada by the government, citing screenshots from Instagram which shows that content on the GB News account is unavailable.

Instagram currently does not show content from news outlets to Canadian users due to a dispute over potential publisher payments, but the UK-based GB News is not banned specifically, and certainly not by the Canadian government.

GB News started in 2021 as a self-styled ‘anti-woke’ news station and is known for its opinion-led shows fronted by pro-Brexit politicians, such as Nigel Farage, Arlene Foster and Jacob Rees-Mogg.

“What has comrade Trudeau done now to ban GB News in Canada?” read one tweet by a GB News Programme Editor that was viewed more than 76,100 times on the social media platform X, formerly called Twitter.

A screenshot attached to the message shows what appears to be the GB News Instagram page, but, instead of any posts, a message reads: “People in Canada can’t see this content.

“In response to Canadian government legislation, news can’t be viewed in Canada.”

In response, one post on Facebook said that the screenshot showed that Canada was communist. Others theorised that the Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, had banned GB News for criticising his government, or exposing global conspiracy theories.

“Bet they can still see the state approved BBC though, huh?” said one X user who reposted the claim.

Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, has been blocking access to news outlets and articles in Canada since the start of August, in response to a proposed law that would require digital giants to pay publishers for news content.

The bill aims to support a struggling Canadian news sector that has seen a flight of advertising dollars and hundreds of publications closed in the last decade.

Effectively it targets only Google and Meta, which control about 80% of all online advertising revenues in Canada.

Last week, the Canadian government revealed details of the new law, including how much it could cost Meta and Google.

The government estimated it could cost the two companies more than the equivalent of €157 million by requiring them to make fair commercial deals with Canadian outlets for the news and information that is shared on their platforms, or face binding arbitration.

According to the draft regulations, the measures would apply to companies with global annual revenues in excess of $1 billion Canadian dollars (about €684 million), operating a search engine or social media platform actively used by at least 20 million Canadians and that distributes news.

Meta reacted by calling the bill “fundamentally flawed” and vowed to continue blocking access in Canada to news articles on its Facebook and Instagram platforms.

This includes international news outlets, such as GB News, and the BBC.

However, there is no legal barrier preventing Canadians from otherwise accessing these channels online. 


Mostly false. Justin Trudeau did not ban GB News in Canada. However, a law brought passed by his government has lead to a dispute with Meta, which in response has blocked all news on its platforms for Canadian users.

Contains reporting by AFP

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