???????Canadian Fake News Awards: Coming April Fool’s Day

By Greg Vezina, president of the Democracy Channel® Inc. and leader of Ontario’s None Of The Above Party

There will be Fake News Awards in multiple categories for private and public broadcasters, print and online media, cable, satellite and other distributors. Also for new media platforms including news aggregators. 

Research in Canada has proven news and public affairs coverage, as well as debates, as being the most important events in election campaigns – with a commercial value of many times the legal campaign spending limits of all parties and candidates combined. 

CBC polling analyst and senior writer Éric Grenier researched the archives of his Threehunderedandeight.com poll aggregating and analysis website and concluded that parties and candidates excluded from polls have their votes reduced by 400 per cent.

Complaints about inaccurate, partisan and unfair political reporting have been summarily dismissed by the Canadian media ombudsman, public editors, and the industry’s National NewsMedia Council for decades, many without reply.

Similar complaints to other private and university journalism organizations have gone unanswered or unsatisfactorily resolved, as have dozens of official complaints to the CRTC, Elections Canada and Elections Ontario.

Canada’s Democracy Watch has run campaigns to get chief electoral officers to use their powers to remedy many problems in our election laws elected officials will not – or to have a court remove CEOs who won’t act.

The three major federal parties have passed election law changes many times to suppress smaller parties and independent candidates, that the Supreme Court of Canada subsequently overruled as unconstitutional attacks on democracy, smaller parties and independents rights to run for election, and voters rights to cast an informed vote.

Similar laws passed in Ontario had to be litigated over again after that government refused smaller party requests to comply with the federal decisions forcing them to go back to court.

Ontario’s None of the Above Direct Democracy Party (NOTA) and several smaller and new parties on Dec. 15, 2017, announcement of a Charter Challenge against more than a dozen of Ontario’s election laws went unreported here, but was covered by the U.S. and international media.

The Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that United Nations Human and Political Rights Conventions Canada has ratified minimum Charter rights, however, small party and independent candidates are regularly excluded from, threatened with or even arrested for daring to be included in local all-candidates debates, even those carried by publicly owned and local cable channels and/or held on public property, clearly violating the most basic of UN rights.

Recently even the U.S. Federal Court ordered the Federal Election Commission to write rules that ensure any presidential candidate running in enough States needed to theoretically win the Electoral College must get equal time in debates, as they must in the primary elections now, because their media abused the rules to allow illegal multi-million dollar campaign contributions to the major parties.

With the exception of the CBC’s Grenier, Ottawa Life Magazine and Sun Media, who regularly give editorial and news coverage to smaller parties and independent candidates, no other media organizations will be asked to provide judges for the Canadian Fake News Awards.

International broadcasters RT Russia Today and Al Jazeera English will be asked to provide judges being the only media organizations in the world that provide equal or even equitable coverage in leaders’ debates, moderated by the former host of CNN’s Larry King Live, to smaller parties in U.S. elections.

The Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism’s Columbia Journalism Review and the Pew Research Center, a nonpartisan Washington-based think-tank will be invited to provide judges.The Democracy Channel will announce the Canadian Fake News Awards results on April 1, 2018.