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Posted by eleanor

For the junkies: Media madness

The Canadian Senate's "Final Report on the Canadian News Media" is out. I'd call it a heckuva doorstopper, but that's sooo old technology. It's a memory hogger. (See my past report on the committee here.)

There's not a single mention of the queer press in Canada in there. I haven't finished reading it (that'll take hours), but searches for "queer," "gay," "lesbian" and "GL" turned up nuthin'. GLBT publishers ignored this commission at their peril. You're part of the milieu, and hiding your head in the sand won't work. (And the fact that out senators Laurier L. LaPierre and Nancy Ruth helped out for the hearings isn't enough. Neither has a foot in the queer community press.)

"Blog" is mentioned once, by a reporter who told the commissioners: "The information on the Internet may not always be just the unreliable, opinionated bloggers. I think that, increasingly, people might be turning to more mainstream or established websites like the New York Times. Personally, I almost never watch television any more because it is so slow to sit through a newscast when I can go to the CBC or the CTV website and find all the stories on the line-up and just scan them within a few minutes."

Bloggers also ignored this commission at their own risk.

Oh wait. That's me.

Comments

# re: For the junkies: Media madness
July 10, 2006 2:28 PM
Zerby on media coverage of the media report:
http://thestar.blogs.com/azerb/2006/07/since_the_stand.html
# re: For the junkies: Media madness
July 7, 2006 3:36 PM
Zerby's media blog looks at the latest CBC mess, with Heritage Minister Bev Oda now putting off the mandate review.
http://thestar.blogs.com/azerb/2006/07/the_conservativ.html
# re: For the junkies: Media madness
July 5, 2006 8:59 PM
Oooooo, and here at The Tyee, "Senators Let Big Media off Hook:
Committee's long-awaited report shrugs at CanWest, targets CBC."
http://thetyee.ca/Mediacheck/2006/06/29/BigMedia/
# re: For the junkies: Media madness
July 5, 2006 8:01 PM
And here's the Maclean's piece on the state-funded network, "Bev Oda: Will this woman save the CBC?":
http://www.macleans.ca/topstories/canada/article.jsp?content=20060701_130255_130255
# re: For the junkies: Media madness
July 4, 2006 5:21 PM
... and the Canadian Association of Journalists has released this --

CAJ calls for reform of federal Access to Information laws

OTTAWA (July 4, 2006) - In light of recommendations from a recent Senate report for a more transparent government the Canadian Association of Journalists again calls upon federal politicians to respect the
public's fundamental right-to-know by strengthening the federal Access to Information Act.

"The CAJ is calling upon all federal political parties to endorse five basic principles, and to ensure that these principles are enshrined in the Federal Access to Information Act," said Rob Cribb, chair of the CAJ
advocacy committee. "In particular, the CAJ urges the Harper government, which was elected on a platform of openness and accountability, to finally respond positively to years of reports and recommendations regarding improvements to the Act."

The five principles are:

* Place outside agencies that conduct public business with public money under the Act, including all Crown corporations.

* Compel public officials to document their decisions, actions and the reasons behind them.

* Require the public interest to be weighed before granting an exemption to access rules.

* Empower the Information Commissioner to order the release of information, review cabinet confidences and penalize dilatory and obstructive federal departments.

* Reform the ATI fee structure, including increasing the current five-hour limit on free search time and reducing photocopying fees to their actual cost

The CAJ joins a chorus of demands for government transparency and improved access to information laws. Last week's Senate report recommended that
Crown corporations be subject to the Access to Information Act. It also called on government departments to end needless administrative delay and
fee barriers to the public's right-to-know.

In February, Justice John Gomery's report on the sponsorship scandal recommended widening information available under the Act and urged a
speedier response to requests. In April, Federal Information Commissioner John Reid responded to the government's Federal Accountability Act and
Access to Information Act discussion paper by saying "no previous government has put forward a more retrograde and dangerous set of proposals
to change the (Act). The new government has done exactly the things for which its predecessor had been ridiculed."

The Canadian Association of Journalists is a national non-profit professional organization with more than 1,500 members across Canada. The CAJ's primary roles are public interest advocacy work and providing high quality professional development for journalists.
# re: For the junkies: Media madness
July 4, 2006 5:18 PM
It's a huge mishmash, something for everyone. Check out the Montreal Gazette's take here:
http://www.canada.com/montrealgazette/news/editorial/story.html?id=deda132c-5579-4613-9a43-133c5d8b0b17

# re: For the junkies: Media madness
June 22, 2006 7:00 PM
What was the point of the report, Eleanor?
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