Saturday, June 24, 2006

INTEREST GROUPS GO NUTS OVER THE CBC

You know, every broadcast special-interest group in the country has gone hog wild over the news that The National is going to be bumped out of its regular 10PM time slot in the eastern time zone for eight or nine times to make room for The One: Making a Music Star on Tuesday nights during the summer. As I predicted right here at this blog, everyone is howling. The Friends of Canadian Broadcasting has trashed the CBC over this; so did Knowlton Nash the other day in a prepared statement. Peter Desbarats of the Western J-school is calling this a "deathly" move, but what do you expect him to say, he's a hard-news guy so he has to say this. All the hard-news people are screaming mad.

The Canadian Senate is up at arms, calling for the CBC to get out of all entertainment and sports programming (thanks a lot, eh? They're really thinking about us Don Cherry fans these days on Parliament Hill.) And everyone is calling for the advertising on CBC TV to be pulled.

I know I'm in the minority when I say the CBC is doing the right thing by scheduling this show. But I'm RIGHT and I know I'm right, and everybody else is WRONG. Or at least, it's the usual self-appointed busybodies and political loudmouths who are all wrong, because I think the silent majority is with me on this one. Let's face facts:

(1) The CBC's current problems are entirely due to the lack of viewers. They are getting creamed every night by CTV. Nobody is watching, not even the highbrow public-affairs crowd.

(2) People would rather watch Canadian-made shows on CTV than boring biopics and politically-focused shows on the CBC. They want to see populist entertainment like reality shows, dramas and situation comedies, shows that have nothing to do with politics or even Canada.

(3) By scheduling The One: Making a Music Star, the CBC finally is attempting to put populist hit shows on the air that will give the CBC a fighting chance against Canadian Idol; moreover, they are hoping to launch a Canadian tie-in-show that will promote Canadian talent in this country.

(4) Hit shows mean plenty of $$$$$for the CBC to fund the other quality programming and documentaries across the network, and should put an end to their financial problems.

You know, the problem is not with the CBC or its current management. The problem is with all these political people and interest groups, all trying to dictate to the CBC how it should be run and how much funding it ought to get! This is why the CBC has managed to alienate all the viewers over the years: because it's had to cater to these interest groups who don't watch TV! Everyone says the CBC is too elitist and out of touch, or too irrelevant! But now that the CBC is making an attempt to reach out to the masses and be relevant again, people complain about it! The CBC ought to be CONGRATULATED for finally seeing the light and moving in a populist direction. If we're going to have a state broadcaster spending taxpayers' money on programming, it better be programming people will want to see, not a bunch of junk about dead Canadian politicians that only a few champagne-drinking people in downtown Toronto are interested in. ( Example: Prairie Giant: The Tommy Douglas Story--- now, that was entertainment. They couldn't even get their facts straight in that biopic!) My advice to these interest groups is LAY OFF THE CBC.

I link you to this blog post by Denis McGrath who basically is saying the same thing I've been saying for days. If it was up to the "Friends of Canadian Broadcasting" and these other highbrows, CBC Television would be turned into something even worse than what it is now, something totally unwatchable. With "friends" like these, who needs enemies?!

Bill Brioux has gone on a rant, too, about this which I agree with. Or rather, he agrees with me, because I said much the same thing in my own rant days ago. This is no national crisis, folks. In fact, it's laughable to hear people try and emasculate and strangle the CBC and dictate its programming. Given their way, the interest groups would toss out every hit show the CBC still has and get rid of all of its advertising, and throw everyone out of work. They'd get rid of Hockey Night in Canada, these people! These interest groups and self-appointed critics are ruining the CBC.

Glad to see I'm not alone on this issue. That's my rant for the day, now I'm going to sit back and watch a CFL game. On CBC.

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