To: Catherine Tait, CEO of CBC/Radio-Canada; Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault
Dear Ms. Tait, Dear Minister Guilbeault,
I am writing in support of hundreds of current and former CBC journalists and executives who are calling on you to put an end to Tandem, the branded content initiative. These people have dedicated their careers to public service. Please heed their call.
So-called “branded content” is extremely insidious for so many reasons, most of all because it casts suspicion over the trust-worthiness of everything else the CBC produces. It's up to you to stand up for your audience and for all Canadians, to ensure we have access to news and information we can trust.
More and more Canadians are getting their information from pathologically unethical companies like Facebook, who target information to our personal interests to maximize the chance we will click on ads. Profit is their only goal.
CBC is meant to be a citizens’ oasis in the desert of hyper-commercialized media. Tandem puts this precious public sanctuary at risk.
We understand that the CBC’s funding is insufficient, and that you seek to find ways to bolster CBC's revenue. But Tandem is a bridge too far. We cannot save the CBC by destroying its core asset: Canadians’ trust in its public purpose.
Please put Canadians at ease. Put a decisive end to Tandem.