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Dwayne Winseck on Canada’s Network-Media Economy

September 10, 2011

Blog columnist Dwayne Winseck of Carleton University has two posts that meticulously detail data on the Canadian media sector between 1984-2010. In a series of two columns Winseck examines the structure of the Canadian mediascape especially regarding concentration. In his first column (appearing August 23, 2011) he documents the size of the Canadian media economy, one that is the eighth largest globally.  He details wireless and telecom growth, the broadcasting industry, and the newspaper industry.  In his second column (appearing September 6, 2011), he investigates whether the internet and new media have become more concentrated. Winseck specifically looks at the network infrastructure industries (wireless and telecoms), the content industries, and online media. Conclusions?

Combining all of the segments of the network media (except wired and wireless because their size overshadows everything else), the big four’s share of the mediascape has risen steadily: Bell (CTV), Shaw (Global), Rogers (CityTV), QMI (TVA). In 1984, the big four accounted for 40 per cent of all revenues; in 2010, their share was 54 per cent – a far bigger slice of a much bigger pie.

Add these four massive media conglomerates with six other large but more specialized firms and you have the big ten companies at the core of the network media economy: Bell (CTV), Shaw (Global), Rogers (CityTV), QMI (TVA), CBC, Post Media, Cogeco, Astral, Telus and Torstar (see here). Their share of the total network media economy (excluding telecoms services) between 2000 and 2010 hovered steadily around 70-75 per cent – a substantial rise from 63 per cent in 1996, and further still from 53 per cent in 1984.

As for the internet – Google, Facebook, Microsoft dominate.

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