Globe publisher asks Canadian Heritage to level the playing field for newspapers

In the wake of the CBC’s ongoing digital expansion, Globe and Mail publisher and CEO Phillip Crawley recently testified before the Canadian Heritage committee of the House of Commons, calling on Ottawa to rein in the public broadcaster and level the playing field for Canadian news media. The Crown corporation has been criticized in recent weeks for stepping outside of its mandate with the launch of a new online Opinion section and other digital initiatives that are in direct competition for ad dollars with local and national newspapers.

“It’s not level if taxpayers’ dollars directed to the public broadcaster make the competition for digital ad dollars more difficult,” said Crawley at the hearing on Tuesday, November 13. “The CBC is The Globe’s largest competitor in the digital ad space among Canadian-based media. My colleagues and I in the industry do not support the notion that handing out more money to the CBC helps local or national newspapers.”

A full copy of Crawley’s speech can be found here.

He was joined at the hearing by Brian Lilley, co-founder of The Rebel. Their testimonies built on previous statements to the committee from senior officials at a number of other media outlets and industry groups, including Toronto Star, Postmedia and the Canadian Newspaper Association.