Skip to content

Saving the CBC: Balancing Profit and Public Service” by Wade Rowland

Saving CBC book Wade Rowland Canadian Broadcasting Corporation public broadcasting television news
“Saving the CBC: Balancing Profit and Public Service” book by Wade Rowland

Saving the CBC: Balancing Profit and Public Service

Author: Wade Rowland
Publisher: Linda Leith Publishing
LLP Singles essay: Media & Communications
Trade paper ISBN 978-1-927535-11-0
Pub date: Spring, 2013 $14.95

Do we want a public broadcaster? A trenchant analysis of the threat to our national broadcaster –and a solution for radical change

  • After years of chronic underfunding, the Harper government leveled $115 million budget cut at the CBC in 2012. Now the CBC faces a new fiscal crisis—one that signals the end of public broadcasting as we know it in Canada.
  • As “the mother corp” faces the potential loss of broadcast rights for Hockey Night in Canada, veteran broadcaster and media strategist Wade Rowland argues we have less than two years to find a way to save CBC/Radio-Canada: the cornerstone of Canadian culture and an institution many regard as the glue that holds the country together.
  • It has become clear that if Canada is to retain a public broadcaster worthy of the name, the CBC will have to be radically reformed, and soon.
  • Rowland draws on over thirty years experience in television production, network news management and media studies to present a plan to satisfy the country’s private broadcasting lobby and at the same time rejuvenate the CBC. Not since the Great Depression, says Rowland, has there been such an opportunity for public service broadcasting in Canada to become all that it can be on all media platforms–and rival the best in the world.

What they’re saying about Wade Rowland’s Saving the CBC:

[quote]”The short polemical book is a fascinating read.”[/quote]
John Doyle, Globe and Mail

[quote]”This book should be read by everyone who gives a damn about Canada and the publicly owned broadcaster that unites us in telling our own stories on radio and television. Wade Rowland convincingly documents the slow, politically directed erosion of the CBC and he has the expertise to show us how to save, and expand, this vital component in Canadian life. Will we listen to him? I hope to God we have enough sense to do so.”[/quote]
Farley Mowat

[quote] “Consider this an impassioned polemic — a ‘debate’ is far too sedate – ignited by the CBC’s degradation in recent years and fed by cold rage against the main culprit, Richard Stursberg, yet with a surprising optimism about future possibilities.” [/quote]
Rick Salutin, author and Toronto Star columnist

[quote]”This is a thoughtful and timely roadmap to guide Canadians who still love public broadcasting but who despair of the present condition of the CBC. Instead of a lament, we now have a plan that can make our CBC a model for how a public broadcaster can inspire, attract and engage us all. You must read this book: Wade Rowland’s vision can restore a CBC we can be proud of again.”[/quote]
Jeffrey Dvorkin, Director, Journalism Program, University of Toronto (Scarborough)

[quote] “Wade Rowland understands public service values and knows the CBC well, especially English Television. His book makes an insightful contribution to a necessary public debate about our most important cultural institution, and his recommendations are largely aligned with the priorities of the 175,000 Canadians who support our work.”[/quote]
Ian Morrison, Spokesperson, Friends of Canadian Broadcasting

[quote]”If you’re looking for the first principles required for effective public broadcasting in Canada in the twenty-first century, Wade Rowland has articulated them here with clarity and eloquence. No excuses left for failure to act – except for that most Canadian of realities: the lack of political will.” [/quote]
Kealy Wilkinson, Broadcast Consultant and Executive Director, Canadian Broadcast Museum Foundation

Listen to Wade Rowland being interviewed on CBC’s As It Happens on May 29, 2013 about the CRTC decision on the CBC Licence Renewal which allows advertising on CBC Radio One.