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Outgoing CRTC Head Says Technology Is Eroding Canadian Culture 404

Posted by samzenpus
from the one-of-us-one-of-us dept.
Patchw0rk F0g writes "Canada's outgoing CRTC head, Konrad von Finckenstein, has some choice words for his successor: Internet and wireless technology has disarmed federal regulators of their weapons to protect cultural identity. The retiring Finckenstein cites over-the-top broadcasting, new Internet technologies and (perhaps most importantly) the fact that the CRTC is antiquated and can't keep up with these emerging technologies as factors in the (still)-growing culture-loss of Canada to the U.S. 'We have now moved into an era where the consumer is in control, and where thanks to the Internet and mobile devices, you cannot control access any more,' he said in one of his last interviews."
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Outgoing CRTC Head Says Technology Is Eroding Canadian Culture

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 23, 2012 @11:58AM (#38792127)

    "Technology is eroding the iron hegemony of Bell and Rogers! Sheeple Canadians are starting to wake up and realize they are being bent over a barrel and are getting restless!"

    The CRTC is an unelected, largely unaccountable old-boy's club for power-players and lobbyists from Bell and Rogers. The CRTC's only mandate is protecting the duopoly of Rogers and Bell, nothing else.

    • I guess it is safe to say that "erroding Canada's culture" is okay then. So the CRTC is really a PAC or Lobbyist group.
      • by Dishevel (1105119)

        OMG! The consumers are in control!
        How horrible.

        • by dimeglio (456244)

          Well if you believe in Canadian sovereignty you should encourage Canadian artists. I did a quick survey in school (grade 5-12) and most (90%) have no idea who the Canadian Prime Minister is. They all know who Barack Obama is of course. Maybe we should start adding stars to our flag?

    • by Mistlefoot (636417) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:43PM (#38792851)
      How can someone claim to have any understanding of the CRTC and get modded insightful when they comment on the "duopoly of Rogers and Bell".

      Neither Rogers or Bell offer anything but cell phones in over half the country. If you live in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan or Manitoba in the west, and much of eastern Canada as well, you cannot get TV or Internet via Rogers with the exception of 3/4g at 500mb for $50 a month. It is the same with Bell.
      But you claim to have an idea of Canadian culture.

      Additionally, the mandate of the CRTC is to ensure that Canada's providers are protecting Canada's cultural sovereignty.
      "the Canadian broadcasting system, operating primarily in the English and French languages and comprising public, private and community elements, makes use of radio frequencies that are public property and provides, through its programming, a public service essential to the maintenance and enhancement of national identity and cultural sovereignty;"

      In other words, the CRTC was created to protect Canada's sovereignty over the airwaves quite simply because TV/Radio were deemed a threat to it. For the CRTC to note that this and new technologies continue to threaten our Cultural is already something that both the government and CRTC claim and believe based upon the CRTC's continued support.

      Now, whether or not this is good or bad, I've no clear opinion.....
      • by Ian_Bailey (469273) on Monday January 23, 2012 @01:01PM (#38793145) Homepage Journal

        Neither Rogers or Bell offer anything but cell phones in over half the country. If you live in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan or Manitoba in the west, and much of eastern Canada as well, you cannot get TV or Internet via Rogers with the exception of 3/4g at 500mb for $50 a month. It is the same with Bell.
        But you claim to have an idea of Canadian culture.

        Just because a company does not operate nation-wide, that does not mean that it cannot be a monopoly/duopoly. You just need to change your market definition from "Canada-wide Internet Access" to "Internet Access in B.C." or "Internet Access in Ontario." In fact, Shaw and Rogers did a swap back in 2000 to concentrate their networks along these lines: http://www.businessedge.ca/archives/article.cfm/shaw-and-rogers-in-4-billion-swap-4992 [businessedge.ca]

        What the original poster meant was that, in any given market in Canada, there are at most two companies then own lines into someone's home. If you're in BC, it's Telus and Shaw. If you're in Ontario, it's Bell and Rogers. In any case, these two companies are doing their best to ensure there is not a third line coming into the house, so they can keep their prices artificially high for as long as possible.

        • That's a similar situation to what's going on in the US. Most homes can get Internet access via their cable company or their phone company. Failing that, there are no other broadband options. Personally, my options are Time Warner Cable's service or Verizon's DSL service. (FIOS isn't available to my house.) Since Verizon's DSL service is much slower and much less likely to be supported (too many news reports of them ignoring it), I'm pretty much trapped on TWC's service.

  • Anachronism (Score:4, Insightful)

    by engun (1234934) on Monday January 23, 2012 @11:59AM (#38792131)
    This is a guy who's trying to stop the wheel of time from turning.
    • by gfxguy (98788)

      Agree... there's no "loss of culture," there's just the gradual, inevitable change in culture that has always happened. At one point in history, of course, there wasn't even a Canadian culture at all.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      He's actually complaining that they can't control what we watch, or where we get it from, and that it also threatens cable companies' revenues. You are correct, in that he's trying to keep the iron grip in tact.

      As a Canadian, we usually have to deal with a certain percentage of Canadian programming and channels. For example, for every 2-3 non-Canadian channels available to be subscribed to there had to be 1 or 2 Canadian channels as well. Actual percentages differ but that is the general idea.

      Now that th

  • Culture loss? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by g0bshiTe (596213) on Monday January 23, 2012 @11:59AM (#38792133)

    culture-loss of Canada to the U.S.

    Why is the US pointed at as the reason for their culture loss? I'd agree that the internet is causing some culture loss, but you could also counter by saying it is causing culture gains. I know personally my life has been impacted by the culture of different nations due to the readily accessible nature of information on the computer. In my house you would think it more Asian than American due to the internet.

    I also see this at my kids school. Both in style of dress and the behavior of the kids.

    While I do agree that it is important to know where you come from, I don't think it is wrong to embrace other cultures. In essence isn't that pretty much where all culture stems from, the exchange of ideas?

    • by cpu6502 (1960974)

      The French do the same thing (try to protect their culture/language), but ultimately isn't it up to the PEOPLE of France and Canada to decide what their culture will be?

      If the people decide they want an interconnected internet-based culture, where they can share ideas around the world, that is THEIR choice and no unelected oligarch has the right to overrule that collective decision.

      If the oligarch disagrees then he should be removed from office and put into early retirement. Perhaps his whole office should

      • The French do the same thing (try to protect their culture/language), but ultimately isn't it up to the PEOPLE of France and Canada to decide what their culture will be?

        If you let the people decide what their culture should be without trying to preserve existing things or invent new ones, we'll end up with reality shows passing for art, and Justin Bieberlake running the country.

      • ultimately isn't it up to the PEOPLE of France and Canada to decide what their culture will be? [...] and no unelected oligarch has the right to overrule that collective decision.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dumping_(pricing_policy) [wikipedia.org]

        The oligarchs have the power to destroy smaller markets.

      • by JBMcB (73720)

        You have it all backwards. In a democracy, you elect people, then they tell you what to do. See, because you voted for them, they can do whatever they want to you. Yay!

    • by Trepidity (597)

      Well, the Canadian goal for a while has been to be sort-of-American-but-noticeably-different, so clearly to be influenced by American culture, but nonetheless maintain strong distinct cultural elements. The worry is that with the proximity, ease of travel & information travel, and huge population difference, Canadian culture will tend to converge to just being basically a regional American culture, mostly the same as the U.S. "national" culture, but with some regional variations, the way Texas and Calif

    • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:09PM (#38792289)

      Basically Canada is still going through issues trying to figure out what it means to be Canadian. A large part of how many Canadians seem to define themselves as as "not American" hence the "little brother" syndrome I talk about. They are like a little kid who is saying what they are is the things the big kid is not.

      This isn't such a problem for the average man on the street, of course, but it is a big issue for the government and various folks. They have a real issue with trying to decide what it is to be Canadian and protecting that. There are even things like laws requiring a certain amount of content on TV and radio to be Canadian in origin.

      • by stanlyb (1839382)
        It is not the common people "not american" syndrome, but the big companies and politician's "big brother" syndrome. We, the people, don't have any problems with who we are, what we like, and what to do in our free time. As of the government, bought, and sold by our "big brothers".......i could say only one thing %$#^$%#^%$#$.
      • by vadim_t (324782)

        Funny thing is that America seems to have the same issue.

        Before I started talking people from the US, I've never heard of people being concerned about their 1/4th of Irish or Russian heritage. But in the US that seems to be a common interest. I suppose that's because the US is a relatively new country and other cultures have much more history and tradition.

        • by g0bshiTe (596213)
          Very true, as a country we are infants, as history and culture goes there is no "American culture" since we are comprised of immigrants from all over. The good thing about it is the diversity. It seems like this diversity is celebrated more today than ever before. How can this be a bad thing?

          My kid is taking something similar to an IB program in school, one of her assignments is to go to cultural events. The first one we went to was an Indian festival (with a dot not a feather). I had never been to anythin
    • Why is the US pointed at as the reason for their culture loss?

      They must have seen the Southpark episode aboot Canadians. I'd be pissed too, eh?

    • by what2123 (1116571)
      Personally I thought he was talking about Justin Bieber and losing him the the States. Honestly, he can take him back and keep his access locked into Canada for the remainder of time. He was not a gain to US culture by any means...
      • by stanlyb (1839382)
        Pleeeeease, don't return him, keep him, forever.
      • Personally I thought he was talking about Justin Bieber and losing him the the States. Honestly, he can take him back and keep his access locked into Canada for the remainder of time. He was not a gain to US culture by any means...
        Also please take back Nickelback and Celine Dion.
    • by Myopic (18616) *

      I agree with you, and besides, what kind of culture does Canada have anyway? I mean, sheesh, they've only been a country since 1982 [wikipedia.org]. Even I am older than that!

      • by stanlyb (1839382)
        And USA is a country for less that 200years, but why should i compare them to the 3000 years old china civilization!!!!
    • by mjr167 (2477430)

      Because the way we have always done things is the way we should continue to do things. And things should never change! Now get off my lawn! Damn kids and their skateboards...

    • Re:Culture loss? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Dr. Hellno (1159307) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:23PM (#38792505)
      This stems from the longstanding conundrum of national identity in Canada. We're a small, mainly English speaking country sitting border to border with the cultural powerhouse of the English-speaking world. So we ask ourselves, how are we unique? What makes us different? And how can we preserve these differences when American culture is so pervasive? It's not a question of embracing other cultures, which we do readily. It's more a concern that our essential character (whatever it is) will be steamrolled by Hollywood media.

      Personally I couldn't care less; I already see us as the 51st state. Let us have Pandora and Hulu already!
      But for many Canadians, the protection and nurturing of Canadian culture in the shadow of the U.S. is a preoccupation and an imperative.
      • Re:Culture loss? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by SecurityTheatre (2427858) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:52PM (#38792983)

        Agreed, but I'm CERTAINLY not very eager to become the 51st state. I came back after living in the US for many years and I'm very glad I did.

        I find the culture here to be far superior in many sense. There is much less of the corrosive attitudes of entitlement and arrogance that I see in the US (there still is some, just less). There is also much stronger sense of community in most places I've been in Canada, and a more trusting attitude.

        Plus, the political ideas are different. In Toronto, the subway is free on New Years. Maybe they will lose some money but they will make millions of people happy and could save some lives from drunk driving. Isn't that what the government is for? To spend a little money at the right time to make people happy, help build community and protect individuals? Brilliant!

        I have never seen a US city consider making public services free on a holiday. It seems almost like it is opposed to the core values of much of the US.

        I also see here, almost nowhere do they just assume you want a paper or plastic bag in the grocery store and if you do, you have to pay for it. More than half of shoppers bring their own canvas/cloth bags and I live in a conservative suburb and many walk to the store, despite owning cars. The only places I ever see that in the US are very liberal spots like Southern California or Boston.

    • Re:Culture loss? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Zeromous (668365) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:25PM (#38792537) Homepage

      He doesn't claim the US is the cause, it is the symptom of their inability to shield culture from technology.

      I think this is why most people in Canada are upset the CRTC even exists to "protect Canadian culture". This backwards notion that culture is static and not subject to disruption is offensive to most Canadians and suspect more than a few Quebecer's within Canada.

    • by ant-1 (120272)

      Why is the US pointed at as the reason for their culture loss?

      Because the US is the biggest exporter of culture in the world. It's not a secret that since WWII the US understood the concept of soft power [wikipedia.org] and that culture projection is a big part of it. It's good for the diplomacy, it's good for the economy (everybody wants to resemble the americans, listen to their bands, wear their gear, etc.).

      It's also very annoying, mainly because it brings uniformity. And because, yes, it crushes other cultures in its path. Not willingly, more like Walmart kills small retailer

    • by jamstar7 (694492)
      I'd be more worried about some of the shit I've seen on the net. You seen some of the weird shit comin outta Japan these days????
    • by Sir_Sri (199544)

      What they mean is that the media jobs are being run by foreigners, exposing us to their values (violence good, boobs bad!) and not reflecting existing canadian values or diversity. Even if those things are produced in canada, to reflect the character of this country (natives, the french, the diversities of english canada), there's no mechanism to actually distribute it.

      We are becoming as ignorant of our own country as americans are, we are now in a situation where even content produced by canadians, in ca

  • bad thing? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fish_in_the_c (577259) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:00PM (#38792151)

    The consumer ( aka normal people) are in control of their own decisions about information and culture?
    Oh no, whatever will we do.

    • by TheSpoom (715771)

      Exactly my thoughts on the matter. I'm a Canadian citizen and the CRTC has always seemed rather Big Brother-ish [wikipedia.org].

    • Perhaps the vast majority of people want to stay in a more socialist country - as Canada is now (for example universal/government run healthcare for all). I know I do. I certainly wouldn't want it to turn into the right-wing dystopia I see America as.

      • by TheSpoom (715771)

        I'm confused as to how showing US content is equivalent to changing the shape of the Canadian government. Care to elaborate?

    • A few of the issues I see that concern me are some of the absurd moralizing being exported from the US.

      Canada has historically had a bit more of a European view on things like nudity, but also on things like violence.

      Recently, the attitude has become much more american. The idea of "guns good, boobs bad" is inherently american. There are few places elsewhere in the world you will find that pressure.

      That's fucked up, but it is an inevitable conclusion which will be drawn by kids growing up immersed in US

  • by ThomasFlip (669988) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:05PM (#38792221)
    I'm a native born white Canadian living in one of the most multicultural cities in the world and I can't stand the CRTC. Living here for 25+ years, I don't even know what Canadian culture is, let alone why we need a bureaucracy to defend it. The only people the CRTC are serving are hacky television writers whose shows get put on CBC and cancelled a year later. They are completely out of touch with reality and need to go.
    • What canadian culture is ?

      -1 Big families (this one is phasing out)
      -2 Religion (this one is phasing out)
      -3 Living with nature (this one is phasing out)
      -4 Food stuff (bacon, "tourtiere" and special thing like thoses ) (this one is phasing out)
      -5 85% english 15% french (this one is phasing out)
      -6 Hockey, and it's not phasing out...
      -7 Try to propagate peace and stuff like that beyond the world, which appear to be phasing out.

      So you can resume the entire canadian culture with only 1 word : HOCKEY. it's sad.

      • by vlm (69642)

        -8 Drinking heavily and its not phasing out
        -9 Ridiculously hot women and its not phasing out
        -10 Draft dodging and its phased out.

  • As a Canadian... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Sepultura (150245) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:05PM (#38792227)

    As a Canadian, here's the solution I'd suggest:
    Stop trying to force Canadian content on Canadians!
    If the content is good and provides something consumers want then it'll be a success. If it's Canadian-created filler crap then it won't, regardless of how forcefully it's stuffed down our throats.

    And don't claim that Canadian content can't be successful on it's own because that's just bullshit. Just look at the music industry to see lots of Canadian content that's successful south of the border for the most glaring example.

    • Kids in the Hall. Or, um, um. . .hockey?

      Damn you! Get off your lazy ass and go make me some maple syrup! What're you doing on /.? You're jeopardizing your Canadian heritage. If you guys keep spending time on the internet pretty soon you'll figure out what real bacon is. Then Canadian culture will be no more.

      Seriously, though, it's cute that the northern territories think they're sovereign. What's next? Puerto Rico?

    • Re:As an American... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Phreakiture (547094) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:20PM (#38792451) Homepage

      I'll back up your point about successful Canadian content here in the US. I've also noticed an interesting side-effect of the CanCon rules . . . There's a hell of a lot of CanCon on American TV. A lot of it is pretty good, and you wouldn't notice it except for the northern accents (which don't vary that much from northern states) and an occasinoal "eh", more frequent on documentary/reality shows (e.g. anything with Mike Holmes) than on works of fiction.

    • Like - Justin Beiber and Celine Dion? The Americans can keep them.

      Seriously, there are some good Canadian produced shows. Flashpoint is an example. Very successful. On top of that, a lot of TV shows are filmed here (Haven being another example) because (I'm told) because the tax regime is conducive. I understand the Quebecois would like to keep their French language - which includes shows and other cultural items being produced in French.

  • by Freddybear (1805256) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:09PM (#38792273)

    'We have now moved into an era where the consumer is in control, and where thanks to the Internet and mobile devices, you cannot control access any more,' he said in one of his last interviews."

    You say that like it's a bad thing, Konrad.

    • by Anrego (830717) *

      Their whole approach has always followed this kind of backwards logic.

      Hell, the core of their efforts to "preserve canadian culture" has been to basically force it on Canadians whether they like it or not, and do everything they possibly can to limit the amount of foreign content.

      The problem with Canadian content is the same general problem with Canadian medicine. You can make _way_ more money down in the US, so why would you stay here (beyond patriotism) .. so a lot of our best talent ends up across the bo

  • by bmo (77928) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:15PM (#38792371)

    "We have now moved into an era where the consumer is in control, and where thanks to the Internet and mobile devices, you cannot control access any more,' he said in one of his last interviews."

    Good. Out with the old, in with the new. Seeya, sucker.

    I would like someone to define "Canadian culture" for me, because I can't seem to find a single one that you can call "Canadian."

    Is it English Canada or French Canada, or is it Polish, Scottish, Chinese, or Malaysian?

    That's not to even bring up Greek Town over by Queen St East.

    Ouzo for everyone!

    --
    BMO

    • by Toze (1668155)
      "I would like someone to define "Canadian culture" for me"

      Tim Horton's, maple syrup, hockey, decent beer, snow, bitching about the unreasonable people in provinces other than your own, health care, toques, a 3rd-to-5th-generation western-chinese-blend restaurant in nearly every small town, a broad array of the most amazing ethnic/immigrant restaurants in every large city, real bacon, real cheddar, maritime comedians, indie rock, poutine, block heaters in every car, the #1 highway, the railroad, and complai

  • by riverat1 (1048260) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:21PM (#38792469)

    Many governments around the world are trying to control the internet, to stifle the democratization of information and access. In the end they will lose.

  • They aren't losing to American culture, American media makes "anti-culture" defined by self-interest, reactionary thought, celebration of ignorance, 0-empathy thinking, and vengeance over justice.

  • As a Canadian I say this: (as has been discussed many times before)

    - What is Canadian identity? First of all we need to accept that we IDENTIFY very strongly with the US (culturally, economically, strategically). So denying it does not grant us identity, just makes us look like hypocrites. The strongest Canadian values we have are our (misunderstood) compassion and generosity. Many times I have witness how Canadians jump to help in times of need without hesitation and I recognized that as truly Canadian.

    - T

  • by Arancaytar (966377) <arancaytar.ilyaran@gmail.com> on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:27PM (#38792583) Homepage

    'We have now moved into an era where the consumer is in control, and where thanks to the Internet and mobile devices, you cannot control access any more,'

    Did he actually manage to make that sound like a bad thing?

  • ...the fact that the CRTC is antiquated and can't keep up with these emerging technologies as factors...

    Doesn't that say it all?? Here's my solution: disband the CRTC and use the money to fund local bands/artists. Maybe setup a new "record label" that is a little more in-tune with society of today, not of yesteryear. There's a lot of things we could do with the money! (Our money mind you!)

  • Nationalist Culture (Score:3, Informative)

    by Verloc (119412) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:29PM (#38792619)

    All the posts I'm reading are "Canada has no culture". Seriously?

    Of course Canada has a culture; Quebec has a more unique example, but for English Canada there are a lot of cultural similarities between their culture and the United States' culture, so most of those characteristics are subsumed under the US cultural umbrella. Canada's resulting perceived culture is more fragmented, less in your face than other cultures. We could easily lose these fragments and become more 'international' (though most English speaking Canadians get information from english speaking countries, so that means the US and UK mostly). All nationalist cultures will face this in the coming years.

    The question, really, is does this constitute a problem? It's a question of identity: 'what cultural groups do you identify with?'. Nationalism has a very real hold on our identity. We need that feeling of belonging to something, and everybody is born into a nation. However, online experience has already show us that 'virtual reality' provides that feeling of belonging and the groups with which we identify and to which we belong have changed drastically. This is a fragmentation of previous groups, and of course the previously established cultural groups are going to fight back.

    Of course, the results of this fragmentation remain to be seen. Maybe it's better to belong to a group that all your neighbours belong to so that we share something in common with them, and some weak nationalism has a greater value then we currently understand. Maybe the explosion of smaller groups will allow a stronger connection within the group while a weaker without. I personally think that both are useful, and that Canadians should want to understand their culture, just as all other nations should want to understand their own culture. Having to legislate it in fear of losing it shows mistrust on one side and disinterest on the other, an ugly combination.

  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:31PM (#38792649) Journal
    It would appear that the Canadians are eroding Canadian culture by choosing American products(is it even logically coherent to be able to erode 'your' own culture? Is it even logically coherent for a population as large and geographically dispersed as Canada to have 'a' culture?).

    Lest my opening mislead, though, I would argue that the technological developments that the CRTC flunkie is complaining about are eroding the CRTC's ability to 'protect' 'Canadian culture'; but they are also eroding any need(we can argue about whether there ever was one; but there is a framework for arguing that there was) for that ability at the same time and by the same means.

    Traditionally, 'culture' came in two flavors: small-scale, organic, locally-produced stuff, which is produced spontaneously, for basically nothing, for some mixture of pleasure and local consumption. Interaction with any broader market is limited; but capital costs are virtually zero, and operating costs are subsistence level. The other flavor, substantially newer, was the 'national culture' which really only existed in a coherent sense with the advent of modern printing technology, reliable mail, radio, TV, national distribution networks for recorded media, etc. This stuff is almost exclusively produced as an economic matter(even if some author or violinist or something does it for the love of the art, it ain't getting printed, taped, or mass-distributed unless some bean-counter says so). Its production and distribution tend to be moderately to heavily capital intensive, fairly centralized, and with considerable economies of scale.

    Now, if you give any credence to the argument that the preservation of 'national culture'(to the degree that such an animal exists, and to the degree that such an animal is seen as "authentic" rather than as a bland, homogenous, destroyer of small-scale local cultures within the nation), Canada had a problem: traditional broadcast media and mass-market printed matter all reward capital investment and economies of scale(marginal cost of a paperback or an additional listener, fuck-all. Fixed cost of media empire or initial production, huge). Since the US is much larger, population wise, and modestly wealthier, it makes overwhelming economic sense that most of the 'culture' companies would be large US conglomerates producing 'American'(whatever that means in this context) culture tailored to appeal to American customers, and sold incidentally to anybody else who was interested. Thus, a competition between the 'Canadian' and the 'American' mass-culture businesses would likely favor the 'American' ones(the scare quotes are because, as businesses, the locations barely matter, they are probably both Delaware corporations operating as subsidies of multinationals headquartered at a P.O. box in the Cayman Islands, their 'location' just refers to their intended market). Now, America happens to have been historically superb at such contests(being reasonably populous, quite wealthy per-capita, and good at grabbing creative people from various messy collapses into war and mayhem of the 20th century); but the phenomenon isn't uniquely American, the same outcome would hold between any two nearby countries of sharply dissimilar market size with competing mass-culture industries.

    However, the various effects of the internet(which do weaken the CRTC's abilities) also weaken the traditional dynamics of mass-culture sale. If the only way for something to hit the radio is because ClearChannel decides to put it there, Canadian music might have a problem. If technology radically reduces the cost of production and distribution of mass culture, it suddenly becomes much easier for the organic, local, semi-recreational, Canadian grassroots cultural producers to spread their stuff far and wide. Even if the means by which they do so are scary American companies, those scary American companies now exert much less cultural pressure. An American record label isn't going to
    • I think he's sending Canadian Culture to a very receptive U.S. audience, and in doing so, he's eroding our American culture of house building.

      As the song goes, "He is Daaaaaangerous!" ;)

  • by Lazarian (906722) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:32PM (#38792665)

    I'm happy to see that the CRTC has failed in their mission to shove their vision of "Canadian culture" down our throats so far. I'm even happier to see the CBC sweating as they are getting grilled by Sun News as to how they account for the billion + a year they get from taxpayers.

    But I suppose since I'm not First Nations or Quebecuois, I'm just not good enough to be considered part of Canadian culture in their eyes.

    If it were up to these guys, all that would be on Canadian tv would be Road To Avonlea and Corner Gas.

     

  • when the US introduced this guy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NtILxBszyf8 [youtube.com] to Canada, and it took off there like crazy :P

  • by alexandre (53) *

    The culture that we have to pay twice as much as 100km south?

    I guess I'll get flamed for this, but the only cultural difference from the US have to be (mildly) claimed by the french, the natives, etc.
    Geographically and linguistically, it's too hard to distinguish if we were to forget about the borders (actually, even for the french and natives in many areas!).

    • I used to work for a French owned company in the US. The French expats that I worked with would go up to Quebec to vacation because it was a place they could go and speak French.

      They all came back disappointed, with the comment - yes they speak French there but they live like Americans.

  • What he really means is that the US is gaining more culture per round than Canada. They are just afraid of the culture borders being eroded because of this. What they need is a good Canadian culture icon so they can do a culture bomb.
  • While probably not the most amazing stuff out there, up here in Canada, my (asperger) son has found a venue for expressing himself thanks to easy access to music producing software, and actually has a chance at being heard thanks to free distribution sites like soundcloud [soundcloud.com] and bandcamp [bandcamp.com].

    I don't hold a lot of hope of the CRTC protecting his cultural expression. An open and free net is probably the only way he'll be heard.

  • 1) They still have hockey
    2) They're still not American (except when remonstrating with an American for using the term to mean "of or relating to the US)
    3) Some of them still speak French

    Bonus: Evangeline Lily (who speaks French)

    Looks like Canada's culture is doing just fine.

  • Favorite old joke (Score:4, Informative)

    by sootman (158191) on Monday January 23, 2012 @12:59PM (#38793111) Homepage Journal

    Canada could have had British Culture, French Cuisine, and American Technology. Instead, they settled for American Culture, British Cuisine, and French Technology.

To err is human -- to blame it on a computer is even more so.

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