The Senate Committee on Transport and Communications is recommending the federal government revisit tax measures that right now allow advertisers to write off foreign-ad spending. The Tax Deductibility of Foreign Internet Advertising in Canada recommends the government study Section 19 of the Income Tax Act, which makes advertising in newspapers, magazines and online publications a tax-deductible expense. Foreign-based companies like Facebook and Google now account for as much as 80 per cent of Canadian online advertising revenues, competing for ad dollars with traditional Canadian broadcast and print media outlets. According to the report, annual internet advertising revenues surged from $901 million in 2006 to $5.5 billion in 2016, while daily newspapers saw ad revenue decline over the same period from $2.7 billion to $1.6 billion. The committee has resolved to undertake a more detailed study of the Telecommunications Act, Broadcasting Act, and Radiocommunication Act this fall, looking at how they can be modernized. Read the full story here.
Amazon has unveiled a new Alexa experience featuring cellist Yo-Yo Ma, who hosts 36 short episodes, guiding the listener through the classical compositions of Johann Sebastian Bach and Ma’s recently-released album Six Evolutions — Bach: Cello Suites. Listeners can activate the skill by saying, “Alexa, open Yo-Yo Ma’s Musical Moments.” The cellist is expected to be the first of a series of well-known musicians who’ll host smart speaker-geared content. Amazon’s Alexa continues to be the world leader in smart speakers, with more than 25 million sold as of last year. Canalys estimates the market will grow to more than 300 million devices by 2022.
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