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Prime Minister Crest

Joint Declaration on Cultural Diversity and the Digital Space

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The Government of Canada and the Government of the French Republic, hereinafter referred to collectively as the “Signatories”:

Reaffirm the sovereign right of States to adopt policies and measures to protect and promote the diversity of cultural expressions in the digital space, in accordance with the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions;

Recall that the protection and promotion of cultural diversity are inseparable from respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms such as freedom of expression, information and communication, and the possibility for individuals to freely choose their cultural expressions;

Confirm their support for the principle of neutrality and universality of the Internet and for multistakeholder governance of the Internet;

Emphasize their common will to support the promotion and dissemination of French-language cultural content in the digital space;

Decide that States, digital platforms and civil society are all in charge of:

  1. Supporting the creation, dissemination and accessibility of diverse local content;
  2. Contributing to the economic sustainability of content creators and to respect for copyright;
  3. Facilitating the availability and dissemination of digital cultural content so as to enhance its accessibility and accelerate its creation and reuse;
  4. Promoting the quality and transparency of information, in particular for large digital platforms and content sponsored on line, so as to counter disinformation;
  5. Promoting transparency in the implementation of algorithm treatments and their impact on the availability and discoverability of digital cultural content, notably with respect to ranking, recommendations and access to local content.

Express their support for the Open Government Partnership, which will be co-chaired by Canada in 2018-2019 and which promotes the transparency of open data, the participation of citizens in developing public policy, and the use of new technologies in favour of openness and accountability. The principles of participation, inclusion, and impact will guide the actions of both countries in this field during Canada’s chairing of the Open Government Partnership.

The Signatories have decided to:

  1. Pursue collaboration between Canada and France on implementing the operational guidelines on the implementation of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and the Promotion of the Diversity Of Cultural Expressions in the digital environment;
  2. Promote direct and open dialogue between partner States, the private sector, notably digital platforms, and civil society, on their responsibilities in connection with the protection and promotion of cultural diversity in the digital space.

For the Government of Canada
Mme Mélanie JOLY
Minister of Canadian Heritage

For the Government of the French Republic
Mme Françoise NYSSEN
Minister of Culture


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