Media Advisory - Sun Media's David Akin joins CJF J-Talk in Ottawa: Does The Press Gallery Matter?

TORONTO, March 25, 2014 /CNW/ - David Akin, national bureau chief for Sun Media and host of Battleground, will speak at The Canadian Journalism Foundation's J-Talk Does The Press Gallery Matter? at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa on April 9.

Akin joins speakers Jennifer Ditchburn, senior parliamentary correspondent for the Ottawa bureau of The Canadian Press, Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism, Senator Jim Munson, a former long-time member of the Press Gallery, for this panel discussion. Tom Clark, chief political correspondent for Global News and host of The West Block, will moderate.

This discussion comes after a recent unanimous vote by members of the Parliamentary Press Gallery to "reserve the right to ask questions in all photo-ops and availabilities with the prime minister, cabinet ministers, and all parliamentarians, to fulfil our function as journalists in a democratic society."

The vote was a reaction to restrictions on access to Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his ministers--and a revealing glimpse of how the ground has shifted on Ottawa political reporters. The regular Prime Ministerial press conference is a thing of the past. Senior bureaucrats hesitate to brief journalists. The PM and ministers take their message on the road or send it out on weekly video clips. Opposition MPs use the same techniques.

As a result, is the influence of political reporters on the wane in the face of shrinking resources, wide use of social media and the distance Ottawa puts between government and reporters? Does the national media coverage of the government matter as much as it used to?

This is part of the CJF J-Talks series, exploring issues and challenges shaping journalism.

Thank you to CJF J-Talk exclusive series sponsor BMO Financial Group, lead sponsor Shaw, venue sponsor National Arts Centre and in-kind supporters CNW and CPAC.

WHERE: National Arts Centre (Salon), 53 Elgin St., Ottawa
WHEN: Wednesday, April 9 / Discussion 7:00 p.m. / Reception 8:30 p.m.

Early Bird: $25 (Limited quantity available. General admission tickets: $30)
Students: $15 (Limited quantity available. ID at the door)
Register now

#CJFjtalk

About The Canadian Journalism Foundation
Founded in 1990, The Canadian Journalism Foundation (CJF) is a not-for-profit organization that promotes excellence in journalism by celebrating outstanding journalistic achievement through an annual awards program; by organizing events that facilitate dialogue among journalists, business people, academics and students about the role of the media in Canadian society; by supporting journalism websites, J-Source.ca English and ProjetJ (French), in co-operation with the country's leading journalism schools; and by fostering opportunities for journalism education, training and research.

SOURCE Canadian Journalism Foundation

For further information:

Media Contact:
Wendy Kan
Program Manager
The Canadian Journalism Foundation
416-955-0394 x502
wkan@cjf-fjc.ca