FLASHBACK: What’s wrong with Senate testimony on RCI’s 80% budget cut?

On May 1, 2013, the director of Radio Canada International (RCI) Hélène Parent and her boss Hubert Lacroix, the president of Canada’s national radio and television public broadcaster CBC/Radio-Canada were before a Canadian senate committee to explain the 80% budget cut to RCI.
Lacroix made the opening statement before the Senate Standing Committee [...]

FLASHBACK: Whole barracks around small shortwave receiver for Canadian federal election

“It pains me to hear that RCI will be leaving SW in June. Over the years I’ve counted on RCI to keep me connected with home, be it during my travels in Europe, Asia, and even the depths of the Amazon. Most of those areas have no access to [...]

FLASHBACK: Certificate of Recognition for the RCI Action Committee

In 2002 the Association of North American Radio Clubs (ANARC) awarded the RCI Action Committee with a Certificate of Recognition for our work in defending Radio Canada International. Here’s the text of the certificate:
Certificate of Recognition for the RCI Action Committee
The Association of North American Radio Clubs proudly presents a group Certificate of Recognition to [...]

FLASHBACK: 1945 first broadcast of int’l service

From the CBC Archives:
Broadcast Date: Feb. 25, 1945
The Second World War is winding down in Europe, but Canada’s new international shortwave radio service is just getting started. From its studios in Montreal and a web of shortwave transmission towers in Sackville, N.B., the service targets both Canadian and [...]

FLASHBACK: 2008 Cttee spokesperson suspended!

February 2008 – Action Committee spokesperson suspended!
Radio Canada International tries to “muzzle” communications union which represents RCI employees

The Syndicat des communications de Radio-Canada (FNC-CSN) is outraged by and condemns the three day suspension without pay of one of its union stewards, Wojtek Gwiazda. For years he has defended the international mandate of Canada’s Voice to [...]

FLASHBACK: 1982 – Ottawa news was important

On March 26, 1982 RCI inaugurated its Ottawa bureau. RCI Director Betty Zimmerman (fourth from left) with staff: three English and three French journalists. At the time, they were all kept very busy covering the nation’s capital. In 2010, one of the two (!) journalists of our reduced Ottawa bureau was [...]

FLASHBACK: KMPG: RCI Should Have Independent Funding

Study says RCI should not be integrated into the domestic service, the CBC/Radio-Canada
In October 1996, the Canadian component of KPMG, a accounting, tax and professional firm, released a report on RCI commissioned by the domestic radio and television service, CBC. The report came out at a time when RCI’s financial [...]

FLASHBACK: It’s always been about int’l mandate

An overview of the issues involved in RCI’s international mandate.
November/December, 2007 – Questions about the international mandate of Radio Canada International (RCI) were once again raised at a parliamentary committee as it prepares to issue a report on Canada’s public broadcaster CBC/Radio-Canada. The public broadcaster is responsible for RCI. And [...]

FLASHBACK: Parl Cttee: RCI essential int’l service

Ottawa, 11 June 2003 – In a massive report on broadcasting in Canada called “Our Cultural Sovereignty”, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage described RCI as “an essential international service.”
Among its 97 recommendations the Committee called on the “appropriate department [to] review [...]

FLASHBACK: Our submission to parliamentary cttee

Below is what our Committee submitted to the Canadian Heritage Committee in 2001 in an attempt to protect the international mandate of Radio Canada International. (You can see the Standing Committee’s response here.)

Radio Canada International and the Broadcasting Act:
The Need to Protect RCI’s International Mandate and its Operational Autonomy
A submission to [...]

What can you do?

The administrators of RCI and our domestic service CBC/Radio-Canada make the decisions, but they are also responsible to Canadians through Parliament and the ruling Conservative government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
We need for these administrators, politicians and the media in Canada and in [...]

FLASHBACK: We lose half the programs/staff

It’s hard to believe it’s so long: March 22, 1991 when our reality at RCI changed so radically. In December of 1990, our parent company the public broadcaster CBC/Radio-Canada announced that the international service would be eliminated unless the federal government paid for it (CBC actually had up until then budgeted [...]

FLASHBACK: “Repositioning” – more bad news

On February 2, 2004 we had another “briefing meeting” about what was about to happen at RCI. Here’s a portion of what I wrote back then on the RCI Action Committee web site:
The briefing meeting is over. We’ve been told about the “repositioning”, feels more like shuffling the chairs on the Titanic. A [...]

FLASHBACK: Bad decision reversed

From the beginning of June till mid October 2001, the RCI newsroom was empty on weekends…….no journalist and no announcer producer was permitted to work at keeping the world up to date on Canadian news on the weekend. All RCI produced newscasts, and all live programming were cut as part [...]

FLASHBACK: Union on RCI mandate at Parl Cttee

On May 25, 2007, the union representing most of RCI’s employees (Syndicat des communications de Radio-Canada) called on parliament’s Canadian Heritage committee to protect RCI’s mandate saying “there will be nothing preventing the CBC from changing its international service” unless “the Broadcasting Act has been amended to protect RCI’s Mandate.” [...]

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D’anciens ambassadeurs canadiens qualifient d’erreur les changements apportés à RCI

Dans une lettre ouverte publiée le 18 mars 2021, 45 anciens ambassadeurs canadiens ont qualifié les modifications prévues au mandat international de Radio Canada International (RCI) d’erreur.
«En tant que diplomates qui ont servi le Canada partout dans le monde, nous savons qu’il est avantageux pour notre pays que des auditoires [...]

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CBC letter to signatories about “confusion”, Committee response

Two days after our open letter to the Prime Minister and three of his ministers (see here), Shaun Poulter, the Executive Director of Strategy, Public Affairs, and Government Relations for our public broadcaster and RCI’s administrator, CBC/Radio-Canada, wrote an email to some of the signatories of the open letter.

It appears that signatories whose email [...]

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Radio Canada International, thoughts for the future

There’s a remarkable document from 1994 few are aware of, which 27 years later highlights some astute observations and pragmatic possible solutions to the problems facing Radio Canada International in 2021.
Its dry title “Report of the Standing Senate Committee on Transport and Communications on the Mandate and Funding of Radio Canada International” barely hints at [...]

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For the record: Committee request for explanations from CRTC

On January 25, 2021, the Committee sent a request for explanations from Canada’s broadcasting regulatory body the CRTC concerning the lack of questions by CRTC commissioners when two separate witnesses testified that RCI’s administrator, CBC/Radio-Canada, had violated Article 46 (2) of the Broadcasting Act.
The Committee request for answers also highlighted the CRTC’s decision not [...]

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For the record: Committee request to testify at CRTC hearings

On December 29, 2020, the RCI Action Committee sent a request to Canada’s broadcasting regulatory body the CRTC. It requested that we be able to testify at the licence hearings of CBC/Radio-Canada (which administers RCI) about the public broadcaster’s violation of Article 46 (2) of the Broadcasting Act. The request was refused for deadline reasons. [...]

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Carta abierta en defensa de Radio Canada International al primer ministro canadiense y otros ministros

La siguiente carta abierta fue enviada, el 15 de febrero de 2021, al Primer Ministro Justin Trudeau, a la Viceprimera Ministra Chrystia Freeland, al Ministro de Asuntos Exteriores Marc Garneau y al Ministro del Patrimonio Canadiense Steven Guilbeault, pidiéndoles que mantengan la integridad de la Voz de Canadá para el Mundo, Radio Canadá Internacional (RCI).
Treinta [...]

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Breve historia de Radio Canadá Internacional

Setenta y cinco años es mucho tiempo, así que no es extraño que la mayoría de la gente no sepa lo que ha hecho Radio Canadá Internacional (RCI) desde su inauguración en 1945. Evidentemente, es imposible enumerar todos sus logros y premios, pero vamos a tratar de ver algunos de ellos.

Radio Canadá [...]

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Open letter to PM, Ministers calls for international service to be strengthened, not cut

The following open letter was sent February 15, 2021 to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland, Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau, and Canadian Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault asking them to maintain the integrity of Canada’s Voice to the World, Radio Canada International (RCI).
Thirty-two signatories, including former Prime Minister Joe Clark, former Canadian [...]

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Lettre ouverte au premier ministre, ministres, exige que le service international soit renforcé, pas coupé

La lettre ouverte suivante a été envoyée le 15 février 2021 au premier ministre Justin Trudeau, à la vice-première ministre Chrystia Freeland, au ministre des Affaires étrangères Marc Garneau, au ministre du Patrimoine canadien Steven Guilbeault leur demandant de maintenir l’intégrité de la Voix du Canada sur le monde, Radio Canada International (RCI).
Trente-deux signataires, dont [...]

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Broadcast regulator ignores crucial RCI questions

Canada’s broadcast regulator is ignoring charges that the CBC/Radio-Canada’s latest policy decision on Radio Canada International (RCI) is in violation of the Broadcasting Act. In a letter to the CRTC, the RCI Action Committee is asking for answers.
Twice last week at the public hearings of Canada’s broadcasting and telecommunications agency the CRTC, investigating commissioners were [...]

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