Recently, I was invited to a happening, an evening "of celebration, comedy, music, and discussion with expert panellists" organized by an obviously worthy volunteer group called Reimagine CBC. Seems Reimagine CBC and another volunteer group have just finished a survey of some 11,000 Canadians aimed at finding out what we, the citizens, want of our CBC.
The CBC is hooked on hockey and the NHL lockout could be just a bitter foretaste of the future for the national public broadcaster. Friends' calculates that the CBC will suffer a devastating financial loss of as much as $200 million annually if it loses the rights to Hockey Night in Canada in 2014 when its agreement with the NHL expires. All told, the loss of hockey would be much worse than the most recent round of cuts announced in the federal budget last March. It would amount to a game changer for our national public broadcaster. Friends is not proposing that CBC television drop hockey, but our national public broadcaster must prepare for this scenario, which could open new and exciting possibilities to operate more like a public broadcaster.