CFN – I’m reading today about China sticking an online dissident, Chen Xi, to ten years in Jail. Another, Chen Wei was recently given a 9 year sentence. I know; we’re not China…yet.
You have the mayor of Toronto cutting off the largest paper in his city because they wouldn’t write what he wanted. Our own experience has been illuminating with our local Conservative MP and MPP not cooperating with us as a media outlet; pretty much boycotting us.
Recently as many of you have read the City of Cornwall is, pick your adjective; cutting, not renewing, its minimal advertising with CFN. Essentially this comes down to “if we don’t like what you write then you won’t get our money”. This is the first year for example that Mayor Kilger and Council did not buy a Christmas greeting to you, our viewers, on CFN. Two more programs look like their getting the chop after New Years….
We in the media have a difficult job some days. We have to balance doing our job which in CFN’s case is to inform and entertain you our viewers. We advocate for many of you. We are your window behind the scenes sometimes too.
Since Mr. Harper has become Prime Minister there’s been a sinister shift in media. I know I can’t hire staff if the revenue isn’t there. I can’t focus resources on important issues if the piggy bank is empty. When this happens on a larger scale this impacts society. For example I had a lawyer recently complain that we in the local media don’t spend enough time in court to check judicial imbalances and behaviors like that of a recent Crown dragging a very innocent person through a costly court procedure.
Governments are using these financial levers more and more to influence media behavior.
We’re not China, yet, but how far behind are we?
Jamie Gilcig – The Cornwall Free News
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