Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Friday, June 19, 2009

"Grudge against CBC seen as funding block," Pollara, May 26. 2009.

[I missed this one. It certainly suggest that cuts to the CBC are palatable only to a loudmouthed minority on the right. -jlt]

Levels of support and satisfaction with the CBC are high but Canadians believe their national public broadcaster is being starved of funds by a government with a vendetta against it. These are among the findings from a major new Pollara study of Canadians' attitudes about and expectations for the CBC. A $170 million funding shortfall and Ottawa's decision to review CBC's budget to find new potential cuts of up to $56 million - pressures that are diminishing the CBC's creative capacity and programs, leading to 800 layoffs - are in full view of Canadians. Against this backdrop, Pollara found Canadians believe that Prime Minister Harper is intent on hobbling the CBC.

- 63% agree that "Prime Minister Harper and the Conservative government are hostile to the CBC and would like to diminish public broadcasting in Canada."
- 51% agree that, when it comes to the CBC "the Harper government has a hidden agenda that favours private corporate broadcasters". 25% disagree and 25% don't know.
- 70% agree that "Canada's level of public broadcaster funding is indicative of the federal government's treatment of the cultural sector overall".

"The good news is that Harper's disdainful treatment of the CBC flies in the face of public opinion," says Ian Morrison, spokesperson for the broadcast watchdog group Friends of Canadian Broadcasting, which commissioned the survey.

  • 82% tune in to some form of CBC programming every week.
  • 76% rate the CBC's performance in fulfilling its mandate 'good', 'very good' or 'excellent".
  • 83% believe "the CBC is important in protecting Canadian identity and culture".
  • 80% believe "the CBC is best suited to provide Canadian programming on TV".

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