Who’s Influencing Who?

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As a PR person who has studied press and media and worked in this field for 18+ years (ugh), I look at and listen to the news in a different way to most.

In my undergrad, we spent hours discussing the measures taken by the Canadian Radio & Television Commission (CRTC) to ensure that a certain percentage of on-air content broadcast within Canada actually originates in Canada. The thought being that with so much content being broadcast by our neighbor to the south, certain steps were needed to safeguard Canadian culture and help Canadian artists and producers.

Lately I’ve been wondering if the same protection is needed in reverse. A big NPR fan, I’ve noticed just how much of the mainstream weekend programming is from outside of the USA including BBC news, The Vinyl Cafe, Day 6 and Wire Tap, to name a few.

I love these programs and know that part of the reason for their popularity in the USA is simply because its amazing programming. Another reason is likely because the Canadian government provides better funding opportunities for this type of content.

My highly scientific observation is that public radio listeners are awesome people so I have to wonder if it’s the Canadian influence that’s driving that? And with about 26 million people listening to NPR every week in the USA (coincidentally almost exactly the size of Canada’s population), how long will it be before folks here fully make the switch and realize their true Canadian potential?

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