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Welcome to the Official Schedule for RightsCon Toronto 2018. This year’s program, built by our global community, is our most ambitious one yet. Within the program, you will find 18 thematic tracks to help you navigate our 450+ sessions

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Last updated: Version 2.3 (Updated May 15, 2018).

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Wednesday, May 16 • 12:00 - 13:15
Whose news? Building a media industry that truly serves Canadians

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Journalism in Canada and around the world is in crisis. It exists in an increasingly contested and chaotic environment, buffeted by political, technological and financial forces. Factors outside journalism’s direct control, such as social media giants cannibalizing media advertising revenue and U.S. hedge fund owners more concerned with profits than the public interest, are all exerting considerable influence. As a consequence, as news organizations cut back, or shut down altogether, not only are we losing journalism jobs and sources of
credible news, we are losing a source of community.

When communities lose news coverage, their members are less likely to volunteer, less likely to vote and less trusting of their neighbours. Add to this, a lack of accountability: who is providing a watchful eye over politicians when coverage evaporates? No one.

Who will step into this vacuum? The current deficit of reporting will be filled one way or another. In the US in particular we have witnessed the rise and extreme politicization of “fake news”. Could it take hold to the same extent in Canada? Alternatively, in this moment
we now have a significant opportunity to develop a media industry in Canada to better serve communities and be more representative of their interests.

avatar for Elizabeth Dubois

Elizabeth Dubois

Assistant Professor, University of Ottawa

avatar for Tim Fontaine

Tim Fontaine

Editor-in-Grand-Chief, Walking Eagle News
I'm a former reporter who founded the satirical and comedic website, Walking Eagle News - similar to The Onion and Beaverton, but with an Indigenous twist.
avatar for Anita Li

Anita Li

Director of Communities, The Discourse
Anita Li is the Director of Communities at The Discourse, an investigative journalism outlet, and Founder of The Other Wave, a website dedicated to covering media from a multicultural perspective. Prior to that, she served as Senior Editor at Fusion and as News Director at Complex... Read More →
avatar for Vinita Srivastava

Vinita Srivastava

Editor (culture, race, arts), The Conversation Canada
Vinita Srivastava is the Culture & Society editor of The Conversation Canada, working with scholars to bring together academic research and journalism with a critical race theory lens. Previously she was Assistant Prof. of Journalism at Ryerson University and the Director of Verse... Read More →

Wednesday May 16, 2018 12:00 - 13:15 EDT