Monday, May 15, 2023


This is a pretty niche topic so if you're joining me from outside of Canada, just come back tomorrow.  CBC is our national public broadcaster, it is both TV and Radio.  CBC stands for Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and is called Societe Radio-Canada in Quebec.  There has always seemed to be a debate about whether we should continue to have a government funded public broadcaster, but there has been recent discussion about it again after a poll came out suggesting a majority of people don't really care if we got rid of CBC. I listen to Peter Mansbridge's podcast, The Bridge, and he and his guests have been talking about it quite a bit, but I don't know if anyone else is really following this story.  However I have been thinking about the CBC and wanted to write a bit about it here. 

When I was little we didn't have cable television so all I watched was CBC programming.  Mostly it was pretty good, they had the news, hockey games, original shows (North of 60 sticks out in my memory, as well as This Hour Has 22 Minutes), and a few non-CBC produced shows.  We also listened to CBC Radio in the car and house. I have fond memories of Double Exposure (the political satire show on Saturday mornings) and The Vinyl Cafe (on Sundays after church).  CBC was our go-to for news and special events, like Princess Diana's funeral.  As I grew up I didn't always watch it on a regular basis, but if a big news story was happening (like 9/11) I always tuned into CBC, as I still do today.  Peter Mansbridge was the face and voice for so many things in my life.  

But even though I grew up with the CBC and think they are the best source for news, I don't really watch it much anymore. We don't watch a lot of regular TV, as we mostly watch streaming shows. But you know what is from CBC? Schitt's Creek, and everyone loved that even if most people caught it once it was on Netflix. CBC also made Workin' Moms, Little Mosque on the Prairie, and Kim's Convenience. CBC does make good TV, but unfortunately the market is so saturated, it doesn't get the credit it deserves.

I also don't listen to the radio as much as I used to. I'm not in the car as long as I used to be when I worked in Mississauga, and when I am in the car I'd rather listen to the top hits rather than journalism, although again, I think the CBC radio shows are well produced. We sometimes listen to the morning radio program but I find it really repetitive and once they glom onto a story, they really beat it into the ground. 

But when I hear that there are people out there that want to defund the CBC, I want to protest.  I think it is important to have a national broadcaster that isn't a for-profit business. It doesn't bother me that they are funded by the government, and I really don't think they are biased (at least no more than any other network). In many communities, CBC Radio and TV are the only options. Local newspapers are fading from the landscape, so the local CBC people are the last source of that information.  We can't keep consolidating and reducing these news sources.  So even though I am not as consistent with my CBC consumption as I used to be, I will defend it to my dying breath.  Do you like and support the CBC? What shows do you remember? Is it mostly just nostalgia or do you think the CBC still serve a purpose in our lives? 

1 comment:

  1. Yes I love CBC too, also I don’t know what would happen during the Olympics?? TSN is way to expensive for our family, so we would we be at a loss with no broadcasting of the games?