Omni channel and Canadian ethnic media: A critical case study of third language broadcasting policy

Date created: 
Ethnic media
Third language media
Digital broadcast
CRTC ethnic broadcasting policy

The foundations of the Canadian broadcasting system are pillared by the recognition of Canadian culture through language. The Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) recognizes this by setting minimum broadcasting content requirements for Canada’s English, French, Métis and First Nation’s language on Canadian television channels. What is exempt from this requirement is the remaining media: the ethnic or third language media. This investigation set out to review the history of ethnic media policy from 2007 to 2019 through a case study of the OMNI multicultural channel because of its significant role as the largest multicultural and multilingual media company in Canada. Findings of this case identify policy gaps that question how well CRTC regulations serve the Canadian ethnic media audience. This study has identified key CRTC broadcasting notices and public hearings for close documentary analysis to create a case study timeline for ethnic media programming. Results of this investigation show how private ethnic media companies, such as OMNI, are tailoring their broadcasting schedules to benefit from their Category A channel statuses; yet, fail to challenge the status quo to meet the rapidly changing needs of the ethnic media audience. Audience competition for licensed programming, new media and a globalized media environment is evolving with technological developments that do not support the existing ethnic media programming model. The findings will be of interest to key broadcasting private media companies, advertisers and ethnic media audiences that benefit from the Canadian third language programming. News media is valuable for community building, but there is an informational gap for Canadians who remain uninformed due to language barriers. New media and globalization shed a new light on the future of programming for the Canadian ethnic audiences and Canadian broadcasting policies.

Document type: 
This thesis may be printed or downloaded for non-commercial research and scholarly purposes. Copyright remains with the author.
Alison Beale
Communication, Art & Technology: School of Communication
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.