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柯文斌省议员有曾宣布族裔媒体资助计划吗?
Did MPP Vicent Ke's announce ethnic media funding program?




(大中报/096.ca特稿):这一微信张贴于上周二,出现在我的多个微信群中:“转发省议员Vincent Ke朋友圈发布的信息。好消息, 刚才省长在机场这边召开一个少数族裔的媒体招待会。宣布以后省里也会给少数族裔媒体拨款。”

"I am writing to tell the good news that MPP Vincent Ke announced at an ethnic media reception near the airport that Ontario would provide funding to assist ethnic media," the post appeared in several of my WeChat groups on last Tuesday.

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省议员柯文斌发布的这一消息对工作与华文媒介的人士来说无异于喜从天降,特别是当在夹缝中求生存的族裔媒体面临日益增长的挑战,并被越来越疯狂的网络巨头蚕食的今天。

This news can make anyone in the crisis-stricken ethnic media industry thrilled, and catch them by surprise, particularly at a time when the rapidly expanding digital giants have increasingly threatened the survivability of ethnic media that struggles in a shrinking niche market.

鉴于这则微信张贴提供的信息非常有限,我立即进行了谷歌搜寻,并找到了安省政府的Ontario Greats项目网站,该网站列出数项在安省大刀阔斧消减后尚存的几个资助项目,包括对杂志和书籍出版商提供的政府拨款项目等。

But the information provided in the WeChat post seems sketchy. A brief Google search led me to Ontario Greats, which listed all a few programs funded by the Ontario government that have survived the sweeping cuts – including funding programs to the magazine and book publishing industry.



我于周三发电邮给Ontario Greats的项目负责人,希望了解柯文斌议员宣布的这项资助计划细节,比如,如何选择受惠媒体,哪个部门负责这一项目的执行,以及“中奖”媒体能拿到多少资助等等。

I emailed the program coordinator of Ontario Greats on Wednesday, seeking more detailed information about the funding programs announced by Mr. Ke, such as how to select media outlets for the funding, which Ministry is in charge, and how much funding it can get.

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Ontario Greats很快就回电邮给我。除了建议我订阅他们的简报之外,还提供给我柯议员的网站地址,建议我和他的办公室直接联系。

Ontario Greats quickly responded to my inquiries through an email. Apart from suggesting me to subscribe to its newsletters, it also directed me to the MPP's website for direct answers.

周四一早我就发邮件给柯议员办公室,就资助项目提出一系列问题, 但直到下班时也没有获得答复。

I wasted no time and emailed Mr. Ke's office on Thursday morning, with the list of questions regarding the funding program. But I had heard nothing back by the end of the business day.



我对那则微信张贴顿时产生了一丝疑虑。在安省政府资助项目频频遭砍之际,为一个媒体行业,特别是一个僧多粥少,恶性竞争的族裔媒体行业提供资助,简直就像天上掉馅饼。

I started to become suspicious about the WeChat post.  At the time when Ontario government funding cuts have clogged the news feed, direct funding to the media industry, particularly an industry with overcrowded players sounds too good to be true.

就在几天前,我曾收到一则电话称安省省府目前无偿为房产主提供免费家用电器修理,房产主不用花费一分钱。我立马感到觉察这是个骗局。

Just a few days earlier, I received a phone call from a telemarketer saying the Ontario government will provide funding to homeowners to have their appliances repaired at no costs of their own.  I smelled fishy immediately.

柯议员宣布媒体资助的这则微信是否是个假新闻?我在周五下午再次致邮件给柯议员办公室,询问柯议员是否在机场附近召开了“少数族裔媒体招待会”。我在电邮中强调,柯议员办公室有责任与媒体携手防止虚假新闻的传播。几小时后,刘燕(不曾注明其在柯议员办公室职务身份)回复称柯议员全天在开会,但开完会后她会向柯议员了解详情。

Was the WeChat post fake news gone viral? I emailed MPP Ke's office again on Friday afternoon, asking if the MPP announced the program at "an ethnic media reception near the airport." I also stressed in the email that the MPP office has a responsibility to work with media to stop fake news from spreading. A few hours later, Christina Liu (who did not specify her job title at the MPP office) responded by saying the MPP was at the meeting for the day, but she will clarify with him as soon as he becomes available.



八点钟左右,我收到刘燕的第二封电邮。她澄清说,是福特省长而并非柯文斌议员在族裔媒体会上宣布的资助计划,且该资助计划并非直接拨款给族裔媒体而是通过广告刊登的方式。安省政府在族裔媒体上刊登广告计划一直因缺乏透明度和公平性遭批评。

Around 8 PM, Liu's second email arrived. She clarified that the announcement wasn't made by MPP Ke but by Premier Ford. And it wasn't direct funding to ethnic media but through an advertising campaign—which has been criticized for lacking fairness and transparency for years.

刘燕在电邮中写道:“福特省长在2020年1月20日组织了族裔媒体招待会,对你们的辛勤工作和对多元文化社会的贡献表示感谢。他还谈及给族裔媒体的广告资助。既将来,不仅是主流媒体,而族裔媒体也会收到政府的广告资助。”

"Premier Ford hosted a cultural media reception on Jan. 20, 2020, to appreciate your hard work and contribution to our multicultural society". Liu wrote in the email." He also spoke about government advertising funding. In the future, not just the mainstream media, but also ethnic press will have access to the government advertisement funding. "

紧接着她又补充说:“那则微信是我们的一名工作人员贴的。如果造成信息混乱,我对此抱歉。”

"The (WeChat) posting had been done by one staffer from our office. I apologize if it caused any confusion," she added.




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