A clear assault on independent voices in Canada.
Blacklock’s, an independent media organization highly respected for their original reporting and ‘old-school’ approach to journalism (AKA confronting the government rather than repeating government talking points), was evicted from the National Press Gallery today.
The eviction was led by executives from the Parliamentary Press Gallery, who were joined by armed police.
On their website, Blacklock’s said this was “reprisal” for their strong stance against media subsidies:
““We will now see the Press Gallery in court,” Blacklock’s shareholders said in a statement. “Our subsidized competitors met in secret, plotted punitive measures over petty grievances and served an eviction notice accompanied by armed police. Their conduct is outrageous.”
Blacklock’s is the only Press Gallery member eligible for federal subsidies that neither solicits nor accepts government funding. The eviction came one day after Blacklock’s published Access To Information records detailing a private meeting between 35 unnamed publishers and the Canada Revenue Agency on distribution of $595 million in subsidies.”
The Press Gallery had previously rejected a motion sponsored by Blacklock’s that would have required all members to disclose their applications for taxpayer funding:
“Blacklock’s at a 2021 Press Gallery meeting sponsored a motion that “all Gallery members disclose all applications for grants, rebates or subsidies to any branch of the Government of Canada” and publish the disclosures on its website. The motion was defeated. “That’s cleared up,” said then-Gallery president Catherine Levesque of Canadian Press.”
A ‘battle’ against independent media
Blacklock’s remains an independent outlet because it is supported by its readers, rather than by forced taxpayer subsidies.
This allows it to be truly free to hold the government accountable.
The same is true of other independent outlets like True North, The Rebel, The Post Millennial, The Western Standard, The National Telegraph, and yours truly here at SpencerFernando.com
In many ways, those outlets harken back to the origins of journalism and punditry.
By contrast, it is the taxpayer funded, government-dependent outlets that are an anomaly.
After all, we Canadian taxpayers already subsidize the large communication apparatus of the federal government, and the media is supposed to hold that apparatus accountable, rather than become part of it.
As independent outlets grow their following, the establishment press is lashing out, trying to hold on to their taxpayer subsidies and deepen their dependence on the government.
The more they do this, the more they further lose the trust of many Canadians.
And their move today to evict Blacklock’s is the kind of authoritarian action that completely goes against the spirit of what the media should be all about.
This is a trend that is likely to continue.
As you can see in the video below, a recent establishment media event titled “journalists and online hate,” described the “battlefield” as being everywhere.
Clearly, the real “battle” being waged by the establishment press isn’t against ‘hate,’ but rather is against their competition in the independent media.
And that is why we must ensure that independent media continues to grow and thrive in this country, because our freedom of speech and ability to truly hold the government accountable depends on it.