If action’s further delayed ‘little or no chance of saving English Canada from complete absorption into U.S. cultural ecosystem’: Stursberg
The issue of ensuring Canadian culture survives the technological change in the production and distribution of digital content is front and centre in policy debate in Parliament. Here, industry veteran Richard Stursberg clearly outlines the threat from FAANG (Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Google), providing both historical context and explicit recommendations, including a clarified definition of Canadian content, as well as possible approaches to subsidizing that content. He paints a very dim portrait of the status quo and conveys a sense of urgent need for policy action to level the playing field.
The Tangled Garden: A Canadian Cultural Manifesto For The Digital Age, by Richard Stursberg, is one five finalists for this year's $50,000 Donner Prize, the best book on public policy. The other four are: Empty Planet, by Darrell Bricker and John Ibbitson; Living With China, by Wendy Dobson; The Wealth of First Nations, by Thomas Flanagan; and Breakdown, by Dennis McConaghy. The winner will be announced in the fall.
Richard Stursberg, author of The Tower of Babble and former executive vice president of CBC/Radio Canada, pictured on April 24, 2019, at The Hill Times' office. 'As Canadians have had to isolate at home, the virus has also accelerated their purchase of the foreign streaming services. Time is short. If we are to save our great cultural institutions, the government needs to act now.' The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade