Liberals in Canada funding $595 million media bailout

I wonder why the Liberal Party of Canada would want to ensure the legacy media gets a bailout? Hmm .. they get to decide who gets the money .. this sounds very much like they want to control the message that gets to the people to me. Very dangerous stuff from Canada's Liberals. Interesting timing too, as we approach a 2019 Election year.

The federal government unveiled a $595-million package over five years to help Canada’s media sector, including measures to facilitate fundraising by non-profit news organizations and tax breaks to fund the production of original content.

In addition, the government is proposing a temporary 15 per cent tax credit for Canadians on online subscriptions to some media outlets.

An independent panel comprised of members of the news and journalism industry will flesh out the application of the moves announced in Wednesday’s fall economic statement. In particular, the group will decide which journalism jobs and which news organizations are eligible for the new funding.

The federal government said it wants to assist Canada’s news industry, which is struggling to adapt to new media consumption habits and the migration of advertisers toward foreign digital platforms. In a speech in the House, Finance Minister Bill Morneau said the goal is to “protect the vital role that independent news media play in our democracy and in our communities.”

The issue of federal funding for news organizations has divided Canada’s media community and sparked heated political debate, with the Conservatives arguing new funding to the media should not be awarded in an election year.

“The media should be independent from the government,” Conservative MP Pierre Poilievre said. “We should not have a situation where the government picks a panel that then decides who gets to report the news. That is very dangerous.”

The funding will start flowing slowly, starting with planned spending of $45-million next year before ramping up to $165-million a year by 2023.

The costliest new measure is a refundable tax credit to support “labour costs associated with producing original news content” that will be offered to both for-profit and non-profit news organizations. The tax credit will take effect on Jan. 1, 2019.

In terms of fundraising, the federal government will allow “non-profit journalism organizations that produce a wide variety of news and information of interest to Canadians” to get charitable status and issue official receipts to donors. This would encourage philanthropic support for non-profit organizations by allowing donors to deduct approximately half of the value of their donations from their income taxes. In addition, charities could also start giving money to these non-profit organizations.

The government said the package will aim to help “trusted” news organizations, but will leave it to the media industry to define the application of the new initiatives.

After being briefed on the package, representatives of some major news organizations said the government has found innovative ways to support the media without interfering in the reporting process. Along with other media organizations, Globe and Mail publisher Phillip Crawley said the newspaper is set to launch a foundation that will receive donations to support specific forms of journalism.

“At a time when some of the traditional sources of revenue are fading, like print advertising, it is important to tap into a new funding source like philanthropic funding,” he said. “It could be millions of dollars.”


By: facepalm (16825.70)

Tags: Canadian Liberal Party media bailout bullshit Trudeau

Location: Canada