Radio Canada and non white people

Use of the “n” word: Pressure mounts on Radio-Canada against the CRTC

Pressure is mounting for Radio-Canada to challenge the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) decision to apologize for a columnist using the “n” word during a radio show.

In a letter to Radio-Canada CEO Michael Goldbloom, more than twenty well-known media figures, including MNA Christine St-Pierre, former news anchor Bernard Derome and former Quebec Press Council President Paule Beaugrand-Champagne, are calling for the CBC to challenge the CRTC’s decision in court.

This letter, published this morning in Le Devoir newspaper, is the third to appear publicly since the CRTC accused Radio-Canada because the title of Pierre Vallières’ book Nègres blancs d’Amérique was pronounced four times in a segment of the show Le 15-18, August 17, 2020.

Most of its signatories had already endorsed a first letter sent to La Presse last Friday. Another letter, this time co-signed by about fifty current CBC journalists and presenters, was published in La Presse on Monday.

In both cases, the signatories oppose the CRTC’s decision and call on Radio-Canada to appeal.

“To important”

The CRTC’s June 29 ruling overturned a decision by Radio-Canada’s Ombudsman, which initially dismissed a listener’s complaint, Ricardo Lamour. The Ombudsman ruled that the use of the “n” word did not violate Crown Corporation’s journalism standards and practices.

According to former Radio-Canada director of information Alain Saulnier, the case raises crucial questions of journalistic independence.

“It’s too important. The CRTC’s decision demonstrates the imperative that Radio-Canada’s independence be clearly reflected in its editorial content. The CRTC is interfering.”

Not only the SRC has to lead the fight, the signatories believe. “Eventually, the CRTC will have its back because it’s going to be dealing with the internet and the digital now. All media are affected,” says Mr. Saulnier.

To meet

According to our information, Radio-Canada’s board of directors is scheduled to meet this week to coordinate its response to the CRTC.

The management of the SRC, which says they “have taken note of the various opinions aroused by the CRTC’s decision”, declined to comment on the file yesterday.

“We would like to take the necessary time to review the CRTC’s decision and the subsequent actions,” we were told.

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