Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Lousy Comedian Begs for Can-Con on the Internet

I don't know if you've ever seen painfully mediocre comedian Colin Mochrie. He's done some improv that was on tv, and half the time you feel sorry for him as he fumbles his way through. I've also seen him on a few commercials, but today I found him writing in the Ottawa Citizen. In this piece, he asks for the CRTC to butt into the internet:
Unlike television, when you are broadcasting through new media, the space for content is practically endless. However, being endless, content can easily get lost. So how do we make sure Canadians can find our own content? How do we make sure Canadian content is featured and given "shelf space"?

Starting this week, our ability to watch Canadian programming when and where we want will be determined.

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission is undertaking a wide-ranging review of broadcasting in new media to determine whether it should be subject to regulation. Along with other ACTRA performers, I'll be there to urge the CRTC to provide a place for Canadian production online.

The CRTC must take measures now to ensure a place for Canadian programming online. If it doesn't create online space for Canadian programming today and provide a way to fund content, our culture and our industry will drown in a sea of foreign content.

Does anybody think it would drown or get lost if it was any good?
The bottom-line is, whether you are watching an episode of Corner Gas on your TV or ctv.ca, you are enjoying a "broadcast" and the CRTC is obligated under the Broadcasting Act to regulate it.

Here's how we can ensure that Canadians will be able to see and share Canadian stories:

Does anybody actually watch Corner f*cking Gas online? The whole premise of the show is deeply flawed. How many times on a road trip have you stopped in to fill up the tank and get a cup of coffee at some country truck stop? The locals are unattractive, over-weight, slow, and impolite to outsiders. It can be annoying. If you're paranoid like me, you might even get flashes of Deliverance or Pulp Fiction. When you leave, you thank god you live in the city and don't have to deal with these types of people. So what do the TV producing geniuses in Canada do? That's right, make a show featuring these people. Americans put on attractive, hip, young people living in New York or LA. Canada gives you fat, old hicks, cracking viagra jokes in rural Saskatchewan. Brilliant. More money for this valuable Canadian cultural contribution!

When I read Mochrie's rhetoric, I automatically think of Mordecai Richler's brilliant book, Barney's Version. The narrator is a producer of Canadian TV schlock.:

Whenever a government minister, a free marketer responding to American pressure, threatened to dump the law that insisted on (and bankrolled to a yummy degree) so much Canadian-manufactured pollution on our airwaves, I did a quick change in the hypocrite’s phone booth, slipping into my Captain Canada mode, and appeared before the committee. “We are defining Canada to Canadians, I told them. ‘We are this country's memory, its soul, its hypostasis, the last defence against our being overwhelmed by the egregious cultural imperialists to the south of us.” [p. 5]

LOL! How fitting is that.

It's an outrage that Can-Con nannies want to butt into the internet. I hope they are stopped. The beauty of the medium is that's it's unfiltered and unregulated.


  1. Governments always want to regulate. The freedoms we currently have were hard won, they were not just given out by the rulers.
    This is almost exactly how the Catholic Church reacted to the new media of the day, the printing press. People were banned from reading the bible.
    The church could not stand the thought of regular people reading the bible, and coming to their own conclusions about the scripture. For centuries the church produced most written material, and the masses could not read. The printing press was a major threat to their power.
    I believe the current nanny state has a lot in common with the pre-Reformation church. The Internet and the printing press share a similar threat to corrupt central powers.
    Corner Gas can be kind of funny at times, come on be nice.

  2. OK, I'm being mean to Corner Gas but since my tax money is paying for it, I have the right.

    I'm being mean to Colin Mochrie to. I've had some traffic come in from people googling his name. I wonder if he's self googling? Oh well, sorry old chap, if you're reading this. I hated to be the one to break it to you.

  3. Good point about the Catholic Church btw. There is a lot of similarities. I'm an atheist, but if I was a Christian, I'd be a Protestant.

  4. Richler knew Can-con pretty well himself. I even had Duddy Kravitz in school.

  5. Colin had his moments on the improv show. He wasn't that bad.

  6. In regards to the Internet, there is a large fear of encryption technology. Remember Clinton saying there had to be an entrance code to any encryption technology. In case of a crime being committed, the FBI needed access to any encryption programs. This is the same thing as the police having a pass key to your house, in case there is a crime taking place. Central governments have a huge fear of Internet encryption. People would be able to have off-shore banking transactions without tax officials being able to take a cut. This is a central government`s worst nightmare.

  7. I did not know Corner Gas was paid for by tax payers. That is so disturbing. A billion dollars in tax money for the CBC, is another wonderful example of a bad government policy

  8. Maybe someone can enlighten me but without going as far as communist China how could they regulate the internet? It seems like an impossible task unless they take drastic measures.

  9. Hi Strack, this is what the pukes at the CRTC want to do. "Create" a $100 million fund, which will be used to pay Canadians to make content for the Internet. Internet providers will be dinged with a tax, to provide the funding. In other words your Internet bill will have an additional tax, and the money will used to provide Canadian content on the Internet. The CRTC can not force you to click onto the program, but they can force you to pay taxes.

  10. Where`s the Taliban when you need them? Why can`t someone do a suicide bombing on the CRTC building.
    The CRTC can never be fixed, lets just get rid of them.

  11. Strack: China can set up a firewall, just like any company can. All service providers have to follow the rules and block out sites. There's enough of a bureaucracy there to monitor it. Obviously, some really smart computer guys can beat it, but 99% of the country can't.

  12. So... it's just another cash grab on behalf of the arts in Canada. How infuriating...

  13. Yes, and look at how the CRTC describes the funding plan. The CRTC wants to take money from the Internet service providers. They leave out the fact, that the service provider costs will just be passed along to the consumer. This somehow allows the CRTC to claim the funding costs will not be paid for by individual consumers. This is the sort of sick minded bullshit, that can only come from a government agency. Too bad Stalin is not still alive, he would have been impressed by the CRTC.

  14. This is just another example of the government being controlled by special interests. The Arts lobby has way more power then a regular voter. In Canada unelected federal bureaucracies also have tremendous power. This is a major problem in Canada.

  15. I just get this off my mind. The CRTC wants to increase my Internet bill, and give the money to some so-called Canadian artist.
    Message to the CRTC, GO FUCK YOURSELF!!

  16. Correction, I just can`t get this off my mind.
    The message still stands!