Today's discussion:

The best thing Ottawa can do to help the media? Stop trying to help us

The federal government’s mission to prop up the dying (or dead) legacy media is plainly misguided. By doubling the media bailout, they continue to make the innovative new media companies less competitive relative to the legacy media incumbents. Overall, the government's policies have made the media less independent and less financially sustainable.

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Comments (15)

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The Hub Staff

One of Derek Fildebrandt’s argues about the Online News Act and how it has been to the detriment of journalism, as per the federal government’s decisions. What are your thoughts on his critiques?

10th January 2024 at 7:27 am
Margaret Baker

indeed…say no more…stop helping

10th January 2024 at 8:30 am
Norm Starr

To the Canadian Federal Govt and of course the PM Justin Trudeau;
STAY OUT OF OUR LIVES & SIMPLY DO YOUR JOB.

10th January 2024 at 7:58 am
Paul Attics

Although the sentiment is understandable, it is wildly simplistic. Drill down into what exactly this means with every Canadian and you’d get 40 million different answers. The result, politics.

How does the news intervention legislation unduly intrude on our lives and what, precisely, is the governments job, if any, in ensuring a healthy journalism?

Note, IMO Healthy Journalism = investigative journalism that reveals to citizens what the powerful want to keep secret, and as such, allows for reasonably effective democracy to endure.

10th January 2024 at 8:37 am
Kim Morton

As soon as government finances certain news sources, based on ideology, we have propaganda, not news as these newsrooms do not wish to lose the free money. Propping up certain newsrooms is essentially bribery. Even with the best of intentions, this happens because money talks.

10th January 2024 at 10:22 am
Paul Attics

Your assertion that the government subsidization of journalism is based on ideology is incorrect. It seems to me based on incumbency.

Regardless, government funding of journalism could be workable IF the provision of funds was as completely-as-possible separated from political interference. Not the current system to be sure. As with all human incentive schemes, it will be gamed to the fullest extent possible.

10th January 2024 at 10:56 am
Kim Morton

Experience has shown us that every time someone from government says we are here to help. you should run as fast as possible, the other way.

10th January 2024 at 10:14 am
Paul Attics

Except in all of the ways that our governments help, no, enable our prosperous and safe society, on an ongoing basis.
There is lots to criticize about government at all levels. It is essential for a healthy society to do so.

Vague but strident proclamations using retread feel-good quotes is great for applause from the tribe mates and a rhetorical lever for the powerful to bypass the thinking brain of easily triggered regular folks, but offer little else.

10th January 2024 at 1:28 pm
Michael F

If you came here expecting to find reasoned debate you are sadly mistaken. It’s just ideologically driven vitriol, and most of it misinformed at best.

11th January 2024 at 4:51 am
Dan Gullett

Since when did CANADA not be a DEMOCRATIC NATION ????
Freedom of speech and print media now 100 % controlled by a flawed corrupt governance of CANADA
which every day implements communist style mandates .
WAKE UP CANADIAN,s before our country fails .

10th January 2024 at 10:08 am
Paul Attics

Clearly emotional and irrational. How can one be an effective citizen with this level of thought?…and this is what was thought about, typed, and posted. SMH

Not democratic? Sure, our democracy quality ebbs and flow, but it is well within the bounds of a today’s democracy…obviously.
100% controlled by government? Such absolutist nonsense is a rhetorical giveaway. Why not 70? 90%? even 99%? LOL
Communist style mandates? Definition of communism please, followed by examples other than the vaccine requirements.

Just do a virtual visit of most any of the bottom 75% of countries in the world to see what actual oppression is.

Having radicals in society is not that concerning, in fact, arguably can be healthy for a society, but combine it with intense, simplistic, and farcical thinking such as this, we have to wonder just how many of our fellow citizens have become so utterly unhinged?

10th January 2024 at 10:47 am
Patrick Mikuse

When a government pays/contributes/subsidizes media, you have the first step towards communism. End all money to media.

10th January 2024 at 11:17 am
Paul Attics

When intervening in a market, which should only happen when the significant public good is at risk, governments are on safer (effective) ground when they try to create conditions with clear guiderails for broad and desirable (by society) outcomes, leaving the solutions to the players in that “space”.

Governments get into trouble when they try to favor a specific solution, for lots of reasons, most of which are not good. Too often, powerful players use their influence to have the government “go the solution route” that, surprise surprise, favors them. This is what happened here.

A healthy journalism ecosystem is certainly a public good. However, attempting to force the shape of the ecosystem, particularly in a period rapid technological change, was folly from the start.

10th January 2024 at 7:59 am
John Trainor

Every move made by the Trudeau regime is designed to limit and control public access to information….information is the liberal governments enemy…..control the medium, control the message….reward those who co operate…..the media conglomerates…….and punish those who dare work around government controls……that is where we are at in Canada with this dictator in Ottawa….he is shameless and is destroying Canada’s freedoms as he emulates his heroes in China…..disgusting…..debating whether the government should butt out of the media control is simply rearranging the deck chairs on this sinking ship.

10th January 2024 at 4:47 pm
Fred McInnis

The federal government back-stopping legacy media has multiplied the arrogance and, like any government dependent, created a compromise in the role of media in Canada. Joseph Howe, a young journalist who took over a newspaper in Halifax pioneered the standard for media independence when he was charged but cleared by a court for publishing a nasty compromise of the law in a celebrated case in the mid 1800’s. Police and politicians were on the take and Howe’s independent paper exposed the whole story. He was sued for libel and defended himself in court where his public arguments settled the case in his favour. Legacy media regression has created a trust level possibly parallel to the mid 1800’s.

10th January 2024 at 7:04 pm