First, we are redefining and confirming the key role a media organization plays. It's important to understand that we're talking about media organizations here. In order for a public broadcaster like CBC/Radio-Canada to be able to take on and fulfill its mandate properly, its funding must be stable for at least five years. That is extremely important. Anyone who has worked in television—I know some of you have been in the profession—knows that it is very difficult to work when you don't know what your budget will be from year to year. So we're talking about financial stability. The government should increase the annual envelope allocated to CBC/Radio-Canada through parliamentary appropriations for five years, to the level it requires to fulfill its mandate.
Why are we proposing a reduction and gradual elimination of advertising revenue over five years?
First, advertising revenue across all media, including CBC/Radio-Canada, are in steep decline. They are melting like snow in the sun. You can see that in 2012, 2015, 2016 and 2017, advertising revenue went down everywhere. That partly explains the media crisis. Because it's already happening, we are proposing an attempt to free up those funds. Furthermore, the quest for advertising revenue cannot be allowed to influence programming choices. We are, of course, aware that advertisers want to be associated with specific programs.
Entertainment would continue to be part of CBC/Radio-Canada's mandate. A number of people told us that CBC/Radio-Canada should be limited to just news and public affairs. Our response to that was that entertainment should be maintained. Entertainment, television series and comedy programs reflect the spirit of Canadian culture. That's what the issue of CBC/Radio-Canada funding is all about.
In fact, we are not taking anything away from CBC/Radio-Canada: we're actually doing it a favour in making this proposal. I'm sure you are aware that there has been a lot of tension.