Should Anyone Have the Right to Strangle Freedom of Speech?

to our loyal 50,000+ visitors

PDF of this appeal.

The world is experiencing extraordinary problems caused by the COVID lockdowns. In Canada we are no different, with massive unemployment, business bankruptcies and continuous uncertainty plaguing our lives. So with all this hardship around us, we are astounded to see our federal government focusing on regulating the internet.

Last November, the minority ruling party in Ottawa introduced Bill C 10 which includes amendments to the Broadcasting Act. They tell us that these are to address concerns about hateful or violent online material, strengthening copyright violations, and trying to get a fair share of revenue from big tech companies. Notably, User Generated Content (including your cat videos, personal comments and any material created by organizations like ours) was exempt from regulation by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).

In April, the government modified Bill C 10 and removed this crucial protection. Now, User Generated Content is subject to CRTC regulation; which means the social media content of millions of Canadians will require CRTC approval. Basically, Bill C 10 gives the government the right to infringe on the free speech and expression of all Canadians.

The government claims that Bill C 10 will not impact freedom of speech. However, everyone’s posts, videos, uploads, etc. are defined as the “core expression” that the CRTC will treat as a “program” and will be subject to regulation. Additionally, they want the CRTC to prioritize, by way of “algorithms”, what content will be presented to you on any internet platform. Let’s be clear, whenever a mechanism decides that some content will move up, some content inevitably moves down. Having the government regulate and organize what you can and cannot view is “soft-censorship”.

Once Bill C 10 passes, the CRTC will have the legal power to simply instruct internet carriers to deny access to sites that counter the government’s opinions.

Basically, they will be able to do whatever they want, resulting in the blocking or destruction of any dissenting voices on the internet. This will be the culmination of state-sponsored censorship at every level of digital expression. Historically, horrible things happen when you don’t have open civil debate in society. We continue to be relentless in speaking up because freedom of speech is the cornerstone of democracy.

As I write this, the Heritage Minister has not reversed his latest changes and has called on MPs to “quickly” pass Bill C 10. He has also been quoted as stating that internet content must adhere to the “government’s vision”. Time will tell how Canadians will fare with their internet freedoms.

Friends of Science Society regularly experiences the financial pain that “soft-censorship” creates. Thus, our present funding crisis:

our operational funds will run out at the end of September.

As President of our society, I am asking for your support.

As I mentioned in my August 2019 post, we survive on ~C$150,000 per year and we provide you with the critical review of ideological climate and energy policy claims.

Please note that we do not qualify for any of the bailout packages “available” for non-profit organizations and with Bill C 10 we will be regulated like major media platforms but without the revenue.

In her video Bill C 10 And The Silence Of The ENGOs, Michelle explains how quiet our detractors are being about this imposition on freedom of speech. The silence is truly eerie; but you can imagine their machinations, anticipating Bill C 10 being enacted, so they can have us shut down. The ENGOs that are silent are also hugely funded by government grants and already echo the government vision of increased carbon taxes stop the alleged crisis of man-made climate change; so they have nothing to fear and everything to gain from this legislation.

To be clear there are many groups already censoring our message. Bill C 10 offers the final tools to throttle any dissenting voices like ours.

Sadly, we have had to deal with censorship over the years:
• 2016: The Edmonton Journal and CBC Edmonton refused to publish our rebuttal to their wrong information on coal phase-out in Alberta
• 2017: Ecojustice called for more money for Canada’s Competition Bureau to reopen an inquiry citing misleading billboard advertisements after the Bureau Commissioner discontinued the inquiry
• 2019: CBC/Radio Canada “fact checkers” denigrated the CLINTEL “No Climate Emergency” declaration and the scientist signatories
• 2020: Poynter Institute and Facebook “fact checked” our posts on Australia’s Wildfire and concluded they were “Misleading / False News”
• Then in 2020 also, Facebook censored our No Climate Emergency say 500 Scientists to UN video without any explanation and no longer lets us promote our content through paid campaigns.
• LinkedIn has recently joined in by removing at least three of our posts under the guise that they go against their “policy on misinformation” without any more detail.

Google’s “algorithms” have already been excluding our material in searches for climate science topics. This lack of exposure is only going to worsen, as Friends of Science Society’s videos and publications do not align with the government’s vision on climate science and policy. We are deeply concerned about the censorship implications of Bill C 10 as it will allow the CRTC to regulate all platforms to downgrade any material that does not align with governmental decrees.

Let’s not forget that the never ending slander campaign of calling us deniers seems to have now morphed into a determined campaign to cancel us.

Please help us to continue fighting their end game and to challenge Bill C-10.

If you enjoy our articles, videos and fact finding please consider supporting us with any direct contribution that you can give and help keep our voice loud and strong. We stand for open, civil debate and full cost-benefit analysis of climate and energy policies. For that, you need freedom of speech and open scientific inquiry.

The Friends of Science Society needs your support more than ever!

We are only able to continue with your generous financial help.

Please reach out to your ten closest friends and share this letter – challenge them to match your donations – inspire them to become members. The more members we have, the further we can spread our messaging.

Thank you,

Andrew Bonvicini, P.Geoph.
President, Friends of Science Society

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  1. Warren Blair

    Time to wake up to the erosion of our personal freedoms. Curtailing our opportunity to open discourse leads to bad decisions and totalitarianism.

  2. Tom Farrier

    The recent ‘gold rush’, of news bites surrounding corporate N. America’s (particularly Canada) rush to join in on the switch to wind (in particular), solar and (unbelievably) biofuels, has been breathtaking … in it’s rise, followed by … sudden silence. The last time corporate giant-ism and welfare governments enjoyed such fellowship was in 1930’s Italy. And, as in 1930’s Italy, government subsidy is the big attraction. In lock-step comes Bill C-10, layering censorship over freedom of speech rights, in Canada (loved the CBC shadowed explanation wherein they described it coming about as action against attacks on their writers). Where is Canada’s Fifth Estate, now? They too received something that looks very much like a buyout package. Is it against the new ‘speech-ism’, law to suggest this is trio of government actions meets precisely the definition (wiki) of fascism?

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