Tuesday, February 22, 2005

The CBC's arts coverage on line


I've railed about the CBC's coverage of the arts before, but it was always in reference to one specific story. Back at the beginning of the month they announced with some amount of kafuffle that they were changing the Arts website. I had hope that it meant that they would get better. No such luck.

On the website, they ostensibly have headings for the various types of "arts." In order they are Music, Film, TV, Books, Media, Advertising, and Art & Design. Hmmm, what happened to dance, and theater? Could somebody explain to me how Advertising is art? And then what the heck is "Media?"

Then if we go a little closer you can see that since the beginning of the year (they obviously started before the kafuffle) they have published 60 stories, not bad eh? Well 22 of them (or more than a third) are on Film. Music gets 11, Books gets 10, TV gets 8, Stage (a secret header obviously) gets 3, as does Art & Design. Media (whatever that is) gets 2, and Advertising (thankfully) gets 1.

By my count, (very rough) 40 of the 60 articles have nothing to do with anything Canadian, except the top-level domain of the URL, and the residence of the writer. It's nice to know that the good folk at the CBC know what the first "C" stands for.

Then, finally, when they sent out the memo about the launch the also suggested that I subscribe to their email newsletter about the arts. I now get it every day, and delete it every day. Why? Well, this past week I didn't delete them - here are the stats for the email newsletter.

Feb 14: 10 Stories, 3 Canadian. Example useless story: "Cheech and I didn't inhale: Chong."
Feb 15: 5 Stories, 1 Canadian. Example useless story: "Reality show to find the next Janis Joplin."
Feb 16: 7 Stories, 0 Canadian. Example Useless Story: "Keanu Reeves film banned in Brunei."
Feb 17: 7 Stories, 3 Canadian Example Useless Story: "Wife Swap producers follow Royal Family for doc."
Feb 18: 9 Stories, 4 Canadian Example Useless Story: "From Tunes to Loons: Bugs & Co. get new look."

Is there anybody there in charge? Is there anybody there who knows what is Art? Is there anybody there who thinks it might be appropriate for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to cover Canadian stories?

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