Quebec moves closer to blocking gambling sites

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The Canadian province of Quebec is moving forward with its plan to block unlicensed gambling sites, a move that many of its critics believe is akin to censoring the Internet.

Quebec draws ire as it moves closer to blocking unlicensed gambling sitesLast week, Quebec Finance Minister Carlos Leitao tabled a legislation on the implementation of the provincial budget, The Globe and Mail reported. Announced in March, it includes amendments to the local Consumer Protection Act, which orders Internet service providers to block “unauthorized gambling sites.”

A site is considered “unauthorized” if it is not approved by Loto-Quebez, according to the report. Those who fail to comply will be subject to a fine reaching $100,000 or even $200,000 for following offenses.

With this move, officials hopes to bring in an additional $13.5 million in 2016-2017 in online gambling revenues to the government’s website, Espacejeux.

For Timothy Denton, chairman of the Internet Society Canadian chapter, the plan sets a dangerous precedent for censorship of the Internet—something that is technically unworkable since Quebec doesn’t have the necessary authority to regulate the Internet in such manner.


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