Zentury Spotlight – Google Removes News from Search and Social Media in Canada

Google and Meta Removed News from Search and Social Media Platforms in Canada

On June 29, in response to the online news act, Bill C-18, Google Canada announced that Google and Meta will remove news from search and social media platforms in Canada.

Canadian news firstly started vanishing from Instagram, when Meta stated: “Today, we are confirming that news availability will be ended on Facebook and Instagram for all users in Canada prior to the Online News Act (Bill C-18) taking effect.” 

Later on Google shared news on Twitter, as well as offered more details in Google FAQ, where they explained the issue with the new law.

With the Canadian Government enacting the new law (Bill C-18 or The Online News Act), Google is simply unable to offer reasonable solutions that would allow application of the new rule to its policies. 

Even though everyone else does it for free, the new Canadian law requires Google to pay for showing links to Canadian news publications. Google reported that putting a price on links (links tax) breaks the way the search engines work. This simple decision leaves a major impact on Google’s financial liability and therefore the news are removed from search and social media platforms in Canada. 

Due to the fact that Google is not in agreement with the Canadian Government, they have spread the word that every link leading to Canadian news publications will be removed from their Search, News, and Discover products. 

According to Meta, the impact will be seen on Canadian and foreign news sources. Some content will not be accessible to people in Canada, despite the fact that these sources will still have access to their accounts and pages and be able to post news links and information.

Meta Launches Treads, the Rival to Musk’s Twitter

The beef between Musk and Zuckerberg continues as Meta launched a rival app, called Threads modeled closely to Twitter.

According to CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Meta’s Twitter rival Threads counts five million users in the first four hours of launching, as they try to lure users away from Twitter.

Even though the app is visually very similar to Twitter, some changes were definitely made. For instance, retweets are called “reposts” and tweets are called “threads”. Meta is also known for introducing Reels feature on Instagram, which visually appeared similar to TikTok. 

Unlike most Twitter users who are limited to 280 characters, Threads users may make 500-character posts and upload videos up to five minutes long. Posts can also be shared as links on other platforms. Users have the option to report, block, unfollow, or block others. Additionally, users can filter responses that contain particular terms.

To log in to Thread, users must have an Instagram account. If they have also downloaded the new app, they may opt to follow the same profiles they do on Instagram after they have signed up.

Zuckerberg has addressed the issues Twitter is challenging lately, stating: “I think there should be a public conversations app with 1 billion + people on it. Twitter has had the opportunity to do this but hasn’t nailed it. Hopefully, we will.”

Meta Launches Treads

Twitter’s Google Search Visibility Drops by 32% in One Day

According to Sistrix, due to the actions taken by CEO, Musk, Twitter’s search visibility on Google US dropped by 32%.

Twitter’s CEO, Elon Musk, placed a temporary limit on the number of tweets users might read each day in order to decrease data scraping. The significant drop happened because Twitter used to be a big part of the search results for users, and by restricting access, he blocked millions of clicks to the platform.

Simply put, tweets are less and less likely to show up in Google Search.

Even though Elon Musk wanted to improve the user experience on the app, the actions left an impact on the operations of Google search crawlers. 

Every day, Google reads information from a large number of URLs to update its index. Musk’s limitations prevent Google from accessing Twitter, which lowers visibility in Search results.

As from July 5, Sistrix shared a new update where they shared that Twitter is starting to bounce back. The switch happened as Twitter stopped requiring login options for users in order to see tweets. This option was quietly removed and users are now able to click on Twitter links without previously having an account. Apps like WhatsApp, Slack and such, are again showing Tweet previews. 

Many experts shared their opinion, and stated that this was one of the biggest SEO mistakes in the last couple of years.

Google Analytics is Under Investigation for GDPR Issues

According to Swedish Watchdog, Google Analytics violates General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Due to the concerns of U.S. government monitoring, the Swedish Authority for Privacy Protection (IMY) has advised businesses against using Google Analytics.

The warning comes amid rising questions over whether sending Europeans’ data to the US is permissible in light of regulations like GDPR.

As the privacy group raised a complaint about illegal use of Analytics, four Swedish companies were investigated by IMY including CDON, Coop, Tele2 and Dagens Industri.

The investigation showed violation of GDPR’s consent and data transfer requirements. The CDON was fined $30,000 and Tele2 with $1.1 million. Each company except Dagens Industri was ordered to stop using Analytics. 
In a response, Google notes that Google Analytics doesn’t identify or monitor specific users throughout the web. According to them, webmasters are in charge of legal compliance and ethical data usage. By offering protections, controls, and resources, Google says it does its part.

Google Analytics