Conflict of Interest

Conflict of interest: Not us!

Does government advertising affect the way media reports on political events? Maybe no, or not much, if the proportion of government advertising, compared to the total, is minor. However, when the taxpayers’ deep pockets pay for significant air time, we have to wonder.

It’s that old perceived conflict of interest issue. If it seems wrong, it probably is wrong.

On Saturday evening, Global TV, like Corus Radio, part of the Shaw family empire made rich through government regulation, presented spots from BC Hydro and a “Canada starts here” ad promoting the BC Liberals. The second Hydro spot was followed by an ad from TReO, a government agency in charge of ice bombs on the Port Mann bridge.

When the BC election campaign begins in a few weeks, people should recall that Advertising Standards Canada says:

  • “Truth in advertising matters”
  • “Dressing it up doesn’t make it true.”

Categories: Conflict of Interest

21 replies »

  1. From the bottom of my heart, I sincerely appreciate all the hard work and effort you and other bloggers put forth in trying to keep our government open and honest! I am ashamed at the behaviour of these, “representatives” who continually tell us how they are in support of 'open, honest and accountable government', how 'they work so hard on our behalf' and yet; at the same time advance their own interest or the interest of their friends. Worse is idea that our MLA's such as; John Yap, sit back and do nothing to bring honour, integrity and professionalism to their vocation.
    I sadly imagine how much worse our society and Province would be without the honesty, the effort and the principles that you and the other bloggers have so diligently inculcated in your work. Because of your work it has encourage me to do my part to try and bring a change on May 14th, 2013
    Thank you,
    Dan Ferguson,
    Richmond, BC


  2. D.F., I agree that citizens want honour, integrity and professionalism. Instead we get lackeys and servile participants in the political parties.

    My own MP, Mr. Sexton, a Conservative, has me on the no-contact list. I can send a reasonable comment but it is ignored and not responded to because my name is on a do-not-communicate list. Democracy, eh?


  3. They run the ads because the ads are produced by their friendly lieberal ad. firms. then they are carried by MSM which is also friendly & they get money also. The lieberals are trying to convience people, who don't really pay much attention, that they, the lieberals are doing a great job. There is no need for these ads. They profit only those who create them, produce them, & politicans. The province is running a huge deficiet as is Hydro. You think some one would be smart enough keep the money for other things, like paying off the deficient, cleaning hospitals, feeding kids, you know the basics in life. But the lieberals have never been strong on the truth & like to live in a fantasy world, which they are attempting to creat with their ads. Or sort of you tell a big enough lie, long enough people will start to believe it. However, given the rising cost of living, the lack of decent paying jobs, the lack of jobs people are starting to realize all these ads are lies. It would be fun to challenge this “truth in advertising” routine. Or have the lieberals charged with false advertising. Like what is true in these commercials, especially the job ones.


  4. During the Canada Line/Cambie Street fiasco, RAVCo spent in excess of $5 million dollars advertising on with the major media including CORUS, Global. Shaw, Rodgers stating that Cambie Street was “Open for business”. Unfortunately no one could access the businesses along Cambie St. due to cut-and-cover construction. Not one of the mainstream media demanded compensation for affected business, even though compensation is normal operating procedure for cut-and-cover construction in the USA and Europe. Not one of the MSN even questioned the need for a $2.5 billion subway.

    Today, not one of the MSN have checked to see if those 200,000 car trips a day, that Gordo, Falco, RAVCo, and Bill Boring claimed have been really been taken off the road because of the Canada Line or was it just more BS from the BS artists.

    It seems with the MSN, the more they are paid to repeat lies, the public begins to believe those lies.

    Oh yes, it is called the Goebbels Gambit – you repeat a lie often enough, the public will begin to believe it!


  5. Is it not more then ironic and sad that one of the main reasons that the government (Liberal's) get away with this propaganda campaign is that the average taxpayer and voter is too busy and preoccupied with trying to pay for and met the financial obligations, taxes, and user fees created by the government in power. There is a hard core group of well informed concerned people (usually retired?) who have the luxury, time, historical perspective, and moral standards that can see through the BS and hypocrisy and they try and shed and spread some light on the corruption and untruths. Sadly, the rest are trying to raise their families, deal with stresses of modern society, and focus on less taxing issues then corrupt politics.


  6. No truer words were ever spoken. After juggling work, mortgage payments, kids to hockey/soccer/dancing/gymnastics, shopping, eating, sleeping the modern family doesn't have the time, energy or the wherewithal to analyze the deception and arrogance that spews forth from this corrupt bunch.


  7. It's becoming painfully clear that CTV's biggest advertisers are the BC Liberals, the Harpercons, the Natural Gas Association (or whatever they're called), Enbridge and TREO. What happened to the company advertisers they used to have? Are none of them doing well enough to advertise on TV anymore?


  8. Same goes for Global and Chek TV. It's like a domino effect 😉 BC Ferries. Why advertise a monopoly to a captive market?

    I notice to the local “newscasters” all seem to have gotten the same memo and the words “hunger strike” have been banned from the air altogether.



  9. Government “influenced” propaganda machines = MSM…sad but true.

    Noted on Global news tonight about a story on the Stadium roof , BC Place financial figures via young NDP cnadidate…anyone heard anything more, or maybe elaborate on this?


  10. Hi would appear that the lunatic fringe, the group of clowns run by the former CEO of Canfor and Catapillar equipment, is about to start an advertising campaign of his own. This will “apparently… attempt” to bolster the flagging BC Liberals, and prevent the “socialist hordes” from over-running BC.

    Will someone please inform the Association of Nut-Bars, that someone left the door unlocked and released the toons!

    Surely these people need a severe reality check, or maybe come out from under the rock, where they have been hiding!

    We are dealing with some of the worst governance, ever seen in Canada! Quebec has it right, they are investigating their politico's and government malfeasance. We need to start doing that here in BC and quickly.

    You have to wonder why someone of this man's reputation would prop up the worst government this province has ever see. If it walks…talks…like a duck, one has to wonder?


  11. I almost fell out of my chair as Global allowed an avalanche of criticism agaist the Liberals hit the airwaves. As I recall, the issues were the BC Place over-runs, 5X over budget, the BC Jobs ads dealt with Mary Polak quite pathetically and another issue that escapes memory but entailed a feeble response by Coleman. Can anyone refresh my memory? Was the Slater fiasco mentioned?However, no one, other than bloggers, is picking up on the fact that Ms Clark has been back for 5 days, not facing the media, but phoning the hapless Courtney dj who was fired about his sexually loaded question she seemed to enjoy.Mike Morton must be tearing out his hair as he said the questions were appalling and disrespectful. Another spin-doctor crowds others under the bus.


  12. Very strange indeed, Anonymous.

    At age 74 0r 75, Jim Shepard must have some kind of financial attachment — or one BIG axe to grind — to bother fighting this losing battle. I'll go with the latter, as throwing money away just doesn't make sense.

    He'd do better just to stay home and shut up… like many BC Christy people are doing.


  13. Speaking of conflict of interest .The committee that is deciding Mr Doyles fate met yesterday and Eric Foster has not recused himself from that committee.He is out of excuses to do so and is clearly in conflict of interest .He knows all about Mr Doyles damming report surrounding renovations to his constituency office.He now should step aside from the committee .


  14. Sadly, there are some who can't afford to take the kids to hockey/soccer/dancing/gymnastics. BC still has the highest rate of child poverty in Canada, and the rising cost of taxes and user fees does nothing to change that.


  15. I see on TV the Liberals are now claiming there are “controlling spending”, , now if they call paying a $70,000 bill to a Liberal supporter,s upgrade to a derelict building in Vernon for a office for MLA Foster with NO reciepts? I wonder what the Liberals would call out of control wasting of taxpayers money? Now I know paying taxes is a necessity, but when I hear about this outright ripoff of the folks of BC I get angry! and this is just a minuscule percentage of whats going on in Victoria. WE the people have to DEMAND TOTAL TRANSPARENCY of ALL expenses from all politicians.


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