CRTC Adopts Modern Approach for the CBC/Radio-Canada's Traditional and Digital Services

Today, the CRTC adopted a new approach to ensure that the CBC∕ Radio-Canada’s programming meets the needs and interests of all Canadians, in both official languages, across all its services. The CRTC is also introducing new spending requirements that will promote the creation of more diverse content.

The emergence of online platforms has changed the way Canadians consume audio and audiovisual content, including the CBC/Radio-Canada’s programming. The CRTC is adapting the way in which it regulates the national public broadcaster to provide it with more flexibility to fulfill its mandate across traditional and online platforms, while recognizing the need to make the new framework adaptable for the years to come.

To balance this flexibility, accountability and transparency are being increased through new and enhanced reporting and measurement requirements for programming on all the CBC/Radio-Canada’s platforms. This new reporting framework will be better aligned with the objectives of the new approach, including those related to diversity.

New spending and reporting requirements are also being imposed to ensure that the national public broadcaster supports and broadcasts programming that is relevant to and reflective of all Canadians of diverse backgrounds and Indigenous Peoples living in Canada.

“The CRTC is modernizing its approach to ensure that the CBC/Radio-Canada’s programming can adapt to and reflect the evolving preferences of Canadians, including equity-seeking and official-language minority communities and Indigenous Peoples. We are giving the CBC/Radio-Canada more flexibility, while ensuring it is accountable and representative of our various geographic and cultural realities in both official languages.”

—Ian Scott, Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer, CRTC

To enhance diversity in its programming, the CBC∕ Radio-Canada will have to invest in audiovisual Canadian programming, audiovisual Canadian independent programming from Indigenous producers, racialized producers, producers with disabilities and producers who identify as LGBTQ2. The CRTC is also maintaining certain spending requirements for programming by and for official-language minority communities.

Regarding audio programming, the CRTC is maintaining musical content requirements and is also introducing a new content requirement for Indigenous music on the CBC/Radio-Canada’s English and French-language radio services.

The CRTC is requiring the CBC/Radio-Canada to conduct regular surveys of all Canadians on how it is meeting their needs. The CRTC will also require that the CBC/Radio-Canada hold formal consultations every two years with Indigenous Peoples, official-language minority communities, racialized persons, persons with disabilities and persons who identify as LGBTQ2. These initiatives will ensure that its programming is reflective of these communities and meets the needs and interests of these communities. 

Quick facts

  • Today’s decision follows a public proceeding that included a public hearing, which was held from January 11 to 28, 2021. The CRTC received more than 10,000 individual comments during this proceeding.

  • The CRTC is adopting a more flexible approach to regulating the CBC/Radio-Canada, which focuses on the measurement of specific outcomes through targeted conditions of licence and various reporting requirements.

  • The CRTC is imposing new spending requirements relating to Canadian programming, programs of national interest such as drama and documentaries, as well as Indigenous programming and programming by and for equity-seeking communities.

  • Canadian and French-language content music requirements on radio stations are being maintained to ensure continued support for our homegrown artists. The CRTC is adding a new content requirement for Indigenous music on all English- and French-language radio stations.

  • The CRTC is maintaining the CBC/Radio-Canada’s local programming requirements in non-metropolitan markets where Canadians have access to fewer sources of news and less reliable and affordable Internet services.

  • The CBC/Radio-Canada must ensure that its programming is accessible to Canadians with disabilities on all platforms and services.

  • The CBC/Radio-Canada must submit an annual report on the number of employees occupying positions with a direct impact on the diversity of audio and audiovisual programming and on programming decision-making who are hired and who belong to the following groups: Indigenous Peoples, racialized Canadians, Canadians with disabilities, Canadians who identify as LGBTQ2, and women. The CBC/Radio-Canada must also report on the retention of these employees.