Conservatives refuse answers on media, communications policy



    VANCOUVER, Oct. 10 /CNW/ - Despite repeated efforts by the Campaign for
Democratic Media, the Conservative Party did not reply to questions about key
policy issues related to media and communications in this election campaign.
    The other four national parties did supply answers to questions ranging
from where they stand on supporting Canadian ownership rules in broadcasting,
to net neutrality and the elimination of patronage in federal appointments.
However none of the parties appear to have action plans to deal with the
growing concentration of media ownership or the marginalization of both public
and community broadcasting.
    "The federal government establishes the framework in which the media
function in this country," says Steve Anderson of the Campaign for Democratic
Media. "This is not about whether the political parties like the way they are
treated by the media, this is about ensuring basic infrastructure for
democracy."
    "Nearly two thousand Canadians wrote to the CRTC a year ago to say they
were concerned about the lack of diversity of voices in their local media,"
Anderson adds. "The CRTC, with its renewed focus on deregulation, has done
virtually nothing to address this real problem. That means Canadians have
reason to believe they are not finding out enough about the important issues
that are weighing on them. And it's the government's job to do something about
it.
    The Conservative Party platform contains a couple of minor media measures
related to increased funding for international French-language broadcaster TV5
and guaranteeing French-language representation at the CRTC, something that is
already a well-established practice.
    "But the governing party refused to answer about where they stand on
maintaining Canadian ownership of our media, increasing support for CBC and
Radio-Canada or addressing concerns about lack of media diversity," Anderson
points out.
    To view the list of questions and a summary of the positions of the
parties, visit
http://democraticmedia.ca/sites/democraticmedia.ca/files/positions.pdf





For further information:

For further information: Steve Anderson, co-ordinator, Campaign for
Democratic Media, at (604) 837-5730 or visit www.democraticmedia.ca

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CAMPAIGN FOR DEMOCRATIC MEDIA

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FEDERAL ELECTION 2008

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