CBC announces Twitter hiatus after labelled as "government-funded media"

Apr 17 2023, 9:18 pm

CBC and Radio-Canada are going on a Twitter hiatus.

The news organization has announced a pause on all Twitter activity after its main account was labelled as “government-funded media” on Sunday.

The Twitter labelling sparked reactions from Conservatives like MP Pierre Poilievre accusing the broadcaster of being “Trudeau propaganda, not news.”

“Our journalism is impartial and independent,” tweeted CBC/Radio-Canada on Monday afternoon. “To suggest otherwise is untrue. That is why we are pausing our activities on @Twitter.”

Twitter’s guidelines define government-funded media as outlets that are funded fully or partially by the government and “may have varying degrees of government involvement over editorial content.”

CBC/Radio-Canada stressed that this is not the case for its organization in a tweet on Sunday evening.

“CBC/Radio-Canada is publicly funded through a parliamentary appropriation that is voted upon by all Members of Parliament,” reads the tweet. “Its editorial independence is protected in law in the Broadcasting Act, as we said in our statement from last week.”

The outlet added that its journalism is subject to strict journalist standards and practices, as well as an independent complaints process through an ombudsman for its English and French services.

The CBC is just the latest addition to the growing list of news organizations around the world Twitter has dubbed as “state-affiliated” or “government-funded.”

Last week, National Public Radio (NPR) in the US also quit the social media site after being labelled as “state-affiliated media.”

The BBC, the UK’s public broadcaster, was also stamped as “government-funded media” last week.

The outlet opposed the labelling, saying it “is, and always has been, independent. We are funded by the British public through the licence fee.”

Twitter responded by tweaking the label to “publicly-funded media.”

Isabelle DoctoIsabelle Docto

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