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Canada From the comments: CBC head warns of ‘cultural imperialism’ threat from Netflix, readers disagree en masse

Today, readers are responding to a warning from Catherine Tait, president of CBC, who likened Netflix to colonial Britain and cautioned Canadians against the effects of cultural imperialism that could result from an onslaught of foreign-owned media services.

Catherine Tait, president of the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. has likened Netflix to the British Raj, arguing Canada needs to be wary of the negative effects of cultural imperialism that could result from an onslaught of foreign-owned media services.

Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press

Reader response has been swift, with the vast majority of commenters disagreeing with Ms. Tait’s statements and pointing to what they see as CBC’s shortcomings.

Cricket:

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The thing about imperialists is they do not think they are being imperialistic. They think they are doing a favour to an ignorant population by spreading their values and ideas. It would be hard to come up with a better description of the CBC than cultural imperialist.

HW01:

I suspect it's the threat to the CBC that most concerns the CBC.

Someone90:

I understand the sentiment and I think she would have a case (despite her very inappropriate comment) if the CBC's programming wasn't so decrepit. Not to mention, the CBC has collaborated with Netflix before. Their programming that isn't absolutely bust has potential to end up there—with a Canadian authorial voice, or whatever. The trouble is, the CBC has been irrelevant for a very long time, maintaining its foothold thanks to bullying and government support alone, not a satisfied viewership.

Jack Devainy:

Free to choose. Why is our government afraid to let us make our own decisions?

A majority of readers disagree with the comments made by Ms. Tait.

LIONEL BONAVENTURE/AFP/Getty Images

William Lyon MacKenzie1:

People are forced to pay for the CBC against their will, even if they do not wish to listen to it or watch it. That is the essence of coercion, and coercion is at the heart of imperialism.

Willy999:

Ms. Tait should be aware that it is not just the content that makes Netflix attractive, it is the absence of commercials! I find it amazing that a network like the CBC, that receives many millions in Government funding, has to have so many commercials on its flagship news show The National!

Jack Bauer:

She should be fired for such outrageous comments.

Agnostic:

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With the amount of public subsidy the CBC receives, they are the last people I would expect to hear from about unfair advantage.

HabsFan410:

To the extent that Canadian culture is now characterized by identity politics and sanctimonious progressive judgmentalism, then I welcome an escape into Netflix. To the extent that Netflix poses a cultural threat to Canada, I say "bring it on!"

WisenWild:

The proverbial elephant in the room is that not many Canadians watch CBC. Point fingers of blame everywhere except on the broadcaster itself. Canadians are interesting people, but the CBC is just not relevant. Most traditional TV is just not relevant.

robit17:

I like Netflix and the content it offers me, for which I gladly pay. Let’s stop the subsidy for the CBC and let it operate on the same basis as Netflix. The public may vote with their dollars and make it an overwhelming success. On the other hand, the CBC content may not be commercially successful and it will succumb to the will of the public. Either way we will no longer be subjected to the haughty arrogance of the artistic elite who think they need to force the rest of us to submit to their anachronistic viewpoint.

Angus S Miskers:

The real threat to culture in Canada is the CBC itself. Worse-than-mediocre programming. Gross left wing bias in every broadcast and entertainment production. Too inward-looking view of the world. The people need to have full freedom of choice of their media, and Netflix is a great example of widened global choice, opinion and definitely higher quality than anything the CBC produces. Defund the CBC today!

About From the Comments

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