CBC is becoming a major media machine and its next target is your local newspaper
The Rebel Alliance may be ready to grow.
For a long time I have felt like I’ve been leading a small fighting force, a Rebel Alliance if you will, against the much larger forces of the Empire.
Yes, I am comparing myself to Luke Skywalker and CBC to the dark forces of Emperor Palpatine and Darth Vader.
Something might be changing, though. Because other media outlets are slowly realizing the Death Star that is the new CBC is nearly fully operational and when it is, their TV station, radio station or newspaper could end up like the planet Alderaan — obliterated with thousands of voices suddenly crying out in terror.
CBC is no longer just a radio and TV broadcaster. They are turning themselves into a major media machine ready to take on one and all in the new digital age. And they are using your tax dollars to do it.
The newest target — your local newspaper.
Postmedia is one of our competitors.
Like every other newspaper group, Postmedia needs to figure out a way to deal with the fact that fewer people are buying newspapers, but people still want their local news and sports and weather.
So they have opted to move to digital subscriptions for their websites known as a paywall.
This is the same thing Sun Media is doing, The Globe and Mail is doing, the Toronto Star is doing.
To let the public know about this, Postmedia decided to try to run TV ads on local CBC stations in Edmonton, Windsor and Regina — cities where they have local papers and CBC has local TV.
The ads just got pulled.
You know I’d get it if CBC didn’t want to run ads for Sun News or our newspapers, since we are highly critical of the state broadcaster.
But not Postmedia. In fact, the company has had a long-standing partnership with CBC, they even gave away some David Suzuki CBC stuff last year for subscribers.
Postmedia reporters and columnists appear on CBC news as commentators.
So why would they not allow these ads?
Because in the eyes of CBC, Postmedia’s websites compete with CBC and they can’t have that.
“Traditionally we do not run advertising for assets that we compete with,” said Alan Dark, CBC ad manager.
“We don’t run advertising to promote assets that we compete with directly and we have local sites in those markets that compete directly with (the local Postmedia sites).”
Funny thing, though, is that CTV and Citytv are still running local ads and they, too, have websites that would compete with the Postmedia sites. CBC and their supporters love to talk about how they are the public broadcaster, keeping the public airwaves open for Canadian stories.
That’s part of their justification for picking your pocket and mine to get their billion-dollar-per-year subsidy. But now that billion-dollar subsidy is being used to take on an industry that CBC was never meant to be part of — newspapers.
CBC.ca is more than a website, it is a newspaper, magazine and wire service all in one and it is completely free.
Consumers may like getting their news for free, but if things don’t change, then CBC will be the only game in town after they shut down your local newspaper.