On September 15, Kevin Desjardins, President of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB), made a presentation and took questions at the Senate Transport and Communications Committee regarding Bill C-11.
At the committee, CAB President Desjardins highlighted that Bill C-11 achieves the goals that were set out for the legislation. The amended version of the bill that passed through the House of Commons included critical improvements that would help promote better fairness and equity in Canada’s broadcasting system.
It is the CAB’s position that Bill C-11 is an important step towards providing the necessary updates to the Broadcasting Act. It was introduced to acknowledge the presence of foreign digital media companies and ensure that, as they benefit financially from their presence in the Canadian marketplace, they share the responsibility with broadcasters to support Canadian media production.
Canadian broadcasters are willing to compete, but they cannot do so in a system that allows increasingly dominant players to take as much as they want and only give back as much as they like. Bill C-11 is the long-awaited opportunity to make Canada’s broadcasting regulatory framework reflect today’s technological realities, and that means bringing powerful global platforms into the fold.
As the Senate continues its study of this vital legislation, we look forward to continuing to engage on behalf of Canada’s private broadcasters who are counting on this bill to provide regulatory clarity and fairness into the future. Their significant contributions to Canadian content, talent, and trusted news must not be taken for granted at this critical moment.