CRTC: Modern approach for CBC/Radio-Canada’s traditional and digital services

THE CRTC on Wednesday announced that it has adopted a new approach to ensure that the CBC∕ Radio-Canada’s programming meets the needs and interests of all Canadians, in both official languages, across all its services.

The CRTC is also introducing new spending requirements that will promote the creation of more diverse content.

Ian Scott, Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer, CRTC, said: “The CRTC is modernizing its approach to ensure that the CBC/Radio-Canada’s programming can adapt to and reflect the evolving preferences of Canadians, including equity-seeking and official-language minority communities and Indigenous Peoples. We are giving the CBC/Radio-Canada more flexibility, while ensuring it is accountable and representative of our various geographic and cultural realities in both official languages.”

The emergence of online platforms has changed the way Canadians consume audio and audiovisual content, including the CBC/Radio-Canada’s programming. The CRTC said it is adapting the way in which it regulates the national public broadcaster to provide it with more flexibility to fulfill its mandate across traditional and online platforms, while recognizing the need to make the new framework adaptable for the years to come.

It added that to balance this flexibility, accountability and transparency are being increased through new and enhanced reporting and measurement requirements for programming on all the CBC/Radio-Canada’s platforms. This new reporting framework will be better aligned with the objectives of the new approach, including those related to diversity.

New spending and reporting requirements are also being imposed to ensure that the national public broadcaster supports and broadcasts programming that is relevant to and reflective of all Canadians of diverse backgrounds and Indigenous Peoples living in Canada, the CRTC said.

To enhance diversity in its programming, the CBC∕ Radio-Canada will have to invest in audiovisual Canadian programming, audiovisual Canadian independent programming from Indigenous producers, racialized producers, producers with disabilities and producers who identify as LGBTQ2. The CRTC said it is also maintaining certain spending requirements for programming by and for official-language minority communities.

Regarding audio programming, the CRTC said it is maintaining musical content requirements and is also introducing a new content requirement for Indigenous music on the CBC/Radio-Canada’s English and French-language radio services.

The CRTC is requiring the CBC/Radio-Canada to conduct regular surveys of all Canadians on how it is meeting their needs. The CRTC will also require that the CBC/Radio-Canada hold formal consultations every two years with Indigenous Peoples, official-language minority communities, racialized persons, persons with disabilities and persons who identify as LGBTQ2. These initiatives will ensure that its programming is reflective of these communities and meets the needs and interests of these communities.