Last week, during the broadcast of Live Earth, a strange thing happened. For the first time, CTV was airing commercials for its shows on MuchMusic, MuchMoreMusic, Bravo! and Star! and vice-versa. The CTVGlobemedia buyout of Chum Limited is now very apparent, with Rogers about to take over the old CityTV/A-Channel/Pulse24 news division of Chum. Hurrah for corporate convergence.
I know most people don’t give a damn about corporate consolidation in the media nowadays. But this isn’t a phenomenon that exists outside of your daily life. It’s a bloody travesty that while most people consume the news passively and without much critical insight into what’s being presented. But really, it’s even worse for the lives of journalists.
I know, as most people in journalism know now, the Internet is being touted as the medium that will keep relevant, professional reporters working well into this century. Thing is, when will the Web actually be making money for these media outlets to justify in investing in more reporters? Has the culture of free won out?
I’m trying hard to believe this is merely a bad time for the media in Canada right now, a time of decreasing competition (very bad) between outlets, declining numbers of jobs (especially bad) and a shift towards cheap, tabloid-like news coverage on all sides of the newspaper/radio/TV equation. Eventually, people seem to gravitate towards quality news coverage, given that most people are more interested in what’s going on their world instead of the latest brain-dead news on Paris Hilton.
But whatever. All I’m saying is, if you’re really interested in good, interesting media, competition in Canada is what will make that happen. Write to the CRTC, complain about all these rubber-stamped approvals of corporate consolidation and bring back fairness to Canadian media, journalists and stories again.