FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
OTTAWA, APRIL 27, 2023 – Marla Boltman, Executive Director for FRIENDS, made the following statement:
“The passing of the Online Streaming Act may be one of the most epic Canadian stories ever told. While we wholeheartedly applaud the House and the Senate for the leading roles they have played in this suspense-filled drama, there is still work to be done before the credits roll on Bill C-11.
The legislation contains a provision that creates two different standards for the use of Canadian creative resources – one standard for Canadian broadcasters and a lower one for the foreign streaming giants. Meaning the likes of Netflix, Amazon and Disney could potentially cut our key Canadian talent out of the picture by replacing them with Hollywood imports, all the while still meeting their “Canadian content” obligations.
This unwelcome plot twist has the potential to unwind over thirty years of carefully crafted cultural policy designed to bolster our independence and cultural sovereignty by preserving our own, distinctively Canadian voices. That is why FRIENDS will work hard to make sure that the pending policy direction to the CRTC contains those final script changes needed to create a fair and equitable broadcasting ecosystem. One that protects and promotes Canadian storytelling by ensuring that key Canadian talent can continue to shine both on and off camera.”
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