CBC Plans Streaming Only Future, Ending Regular TV and Radio

cbc streaming only

The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) says it eventually plans to end traditional TV and radio broadcasts, and move to streaming only.

That’s according to the president and CEO of the CBC, Catherine Tait, speaking with The Globe and Mail.

Tait said Canadians are moving to streaming while the crown corporation is “sitting here loyally broadcasting over the airwaves.”

The primary CBC TV audience is at the ages of 55 and up and 65 and up, while younger Canadians and newcomers are only online.

“If we’re going to be audience first we have to be digital first,” said Tait. “We get up every day and say, ‘What do our audiences want, and where are they?’ And they’re on digital in increasing numbers. And so if we are not there we’re no longer relevant.”

When the CBC eventually plans to go streaming only, it will end traditional TV and radio broadcasts over the airwaves. But that change won’t likely happen over the next decade.

“We don’t want to drag Canadians to digital. They are dragging us,” said Tait. “We saw it in the pandemic, subscriptions to streaming go way up and those people don’t go back to conventional television.”

Tait also addressed recent “CBC bashing”, partly led by Pierre Poilievre of the federal Conservatives, the Lead of the Opposition. Poilievre has called for “defunding the CBC”, as the public broadcaster received $1.24 billion in government funding in 2021-2022 and $1.39 billion in 2020-2021.

“I think they feel that CBC is a mouthpiece for the Liberal government,” explained Tait.

Back in December, CBC News Explore launched, offering a 24/7 streaming news service powered by ads. The CBC also has a streaming service called CBC Gem that is $4.99/month to remove ads, plus gain access to the CBC News Network.

Do you still watch the CBC on TV or listen to CBC Radio? Time to binge-watch the Anne of Green Gables

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