Blog post from Fagstein's blog. https://blog.fagstein.com/2020/01/30/btlr-panel-report/
We can talk about making Netflix charge GST, or phasing out ads from the CBC , or the various proposed changes to telecom policy that will have a huge financial impact for the industry but be largely invisible to end users, but the real headline out of the Broadcasting and Telecommunications Legislative Review Panel report released on Wednesday is this: A big expansion of government regulation in media.
I’d say this wasn’t a surprise looking at the backgrounds of the panel members , but that would be unfair. The panel was made up of legal experts with experience all over the industry, including with telecommunication providers who would be largely against these kinds of additional regulatory burdens. And, frankly, it was a surprise that they would push for this much additional regulation.
Certainly, going boldly in the other direction wasn’t an option. The terms of reference that guided the panel made it clear that the government hasn’t changed its objectives in terms of getting the industry to promote Canadian content, ensuring diversity and accessibility, protecting local news and the CBC, and ensuring that additional costs won’t be assumed (directly) by the consumer. If you have issues with those objectives, take it up with the government, not the panel.
And in any case, those 97 recommendations are in the hands of that same federal government, and it will be up to them to decide which of those recommendations to follow and which to ignore. Those recommendations that are less politically popular should get filtered out at that stage, as well as those that would be too disruptive to take the political risk.
The recommendations are summarized in various news stories about the report (CBC , Globe and Mail , Wire Report , iPolitics , Cartt.ca , The Logic , Global News , Postmedia , Toronto Star )
Here are some highlights of what the panel has proposed: