Our government believes in the value of the arts and culture to Canada's society and economy. That's why, in Budget 2016, we invested $1.9 billion in the arts and culture. We are asking Canadians to work with us to build a new model that reflects a broad consensus - a social contract - of how we support the creation, discovery and export of Canadian content in the digital world. And that's where we need your help.
When was the last time you went to a video store to rent a movie? Do you buy a newspaper or wait to catch the daily news on the radio or tv, or get your news and information online or through social media? Have you ever created or watched a tutorial online? Do you ever hit your monthly mobile data limit because you've streamed one too many songs?
Canadian cultural industries are undergoing important transformations – instead of going to the video store, Canadians now have access to online movie libraries that can be watched at the click of a button. Books can be borrowed from the library without ever leaving the house. As more and more Canadians are downloading their favorite literary classics, others are using the power of the internet to watch live theatre and dance performance the world over. We discover new bands through social media and share playlists with our friends. Every day, creators are inspiring themselves and learning new skills and techniques by viewing videos or exchanging their works with online art communities from around the world. Visual and digital artists can harness the power and potential of virtual reality, which is becoming more and more accessible, to share immersive and genre-bending artistic experiences with audiences like never before. We no longer need to plan our day around catching a radio show at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday afternoon anymore, the podcast can be downloaded and listened to any time we like. Canadians have fully embraced these new ways of creating or consuming Canadian content.
So, this is why our Government needs your ideas on how Canada can seize this ongoing digital shift. It's time to rethink how we support and promote Canadian content — and we need your help! We need to create a system that better aligns with how we consume content and that helps Canadian content creators succeed in a digital, globalized world.
Canadians can be very proud of our country's creative culture. Think of exceptional musicians like Arcade Fire, inspiring authors like Margaret Atwood and Dany Laferrière, award-winning filmmakers like Xavier Dolan, widely popular digital influencers like Lilly Singh (a.k.a IISuperwomanII) and outstanding TV series like Orphan Black and Unité 9. All are expressing their art in a world changed by today's online focus.
It is time to adapt our approaches to how we support culture, and move Canada forward as a hub for creativity and innovation. We know that diversity and creativity are at the heart of innovation, and are key to having a strong society, a vibrant democracy, and to promoting Canadian cultural content to the world.
In our new approach, we need to: