In light of the “anglicization of Quebec”, PQ members propose the creation of a “Quebec CRTC” to defend local culture. The party also proposes setting up a content promotion office in Quebec, which would negotiate viewability deals with either Netflix or Amazon.
Posted at 10:22 am
The group’s new proposals come as it reveals the results of a Léger poll that found 58% of Quebecers aged 18-34 consume “very little, if any” Quebec content on online viewing platforms.
More than three in 10 of these young people admit they have “never heard or watched Quebec content”. The vast majority, around 75%, say their consumption of Quebec content never exceeds four hours a week, which is “a tiny fraction of their total viewing time.”
Matane member and cultural critic Pascal Bérubé affirms that this portrait is worrying “for the future of French in Quebec and for the knowledge of Quebec’s youth about what is being done here”. “It’s also worrying for our artists, our production houses and our distributors. However, the blame should not be placed on young people; it’s more about accessibility, discoverability,” he says.
According to PQ, a “Quebec CRTC” would make it possible “to ensure the financing and the good online presentation of Quebec content”. Currently, the existing Canadian body does not allow us to “defend our culture,” the party asserts.
“We need to return CRTC powers to Quebec, and the sooner the better. If we are to guarantee the availability of Quebec content online, there is no way we can continue to let Canada decide the space reserved for it on the platforms. Ottawa is a laggard legislator that hasn’t modernized the law or the CRTC,” said candidate for the Marie-Victorin nomination, Pierre Nantel.
Last April, he was defeated by five percentage points against CAQ Shirley Dorismond in riding, which is historically a PQ lock. He intends to stand for re-election in the next parliamentary elections in October.
Double budget from Télé-Québec
Alongside the Office for the Promotion of Quebec Content, the PQ commits to doubling the annual budget of broadcaster Télé-Québec, increasing it to 140 million to “increase production of Quebec content”. “Télé-Québec must be used wisely. […] Yes, we have ambitions to compete with Radio-Canada; Yes, we have the ambition to affirm our cultural sovereignty directly,” stressed Mr. Bérubé.
Pablo Rodriguez, the federal heritage minister, hinted last April that he intends to hold the CRTC accountable to define what will be considered a Canadian work once Bill C-11 is passed by Parliament. According to him, the legislation will help increase investment in the creative industries in Canada.
“The survival of independent production companies depends on their ability to operate in a fairer regulatory environment that involves all the major players in the broadcasting ecosystem,” said Association Québécoise de la production maladie CEO Hélène Messier when the bill was presented in February .