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Canada New Media Fund Cut By Federal Government – Industry Associations React

As reported in the Globe and Mail on the weekend, the Canadian federal government is cutting the $14.5 million Canada New Media Fund (CNMF) administered by Telefilm.

This announcement comes on the heels of other program cuts that fund new developments in the Canadian interactive space, including:

  • Trade Routes, $9 million
  • The A-V Preservation Trust,  $300,000
  • The Canadian Independent Film and Video Fund, $1.5 million
  • The National Training Schools Program, $2.5 million
  • PromArt, $4.7 million

Ian Kelso, President of the Canadian Interactive Alliance (CIAIC) and President & CEO of Interactive Ontario, has written an open letter to interactive media stakeholders in Ontario in efforts to rouse industry leaders to engage Ottawa and press for replacement funding:

Interactive Ontario and the Canadian Interactive Alliance (CIAIC), are
committed to remain at the forefront of this issue.  For the past two
years we have been calling for an increase to this fund, which has been
very effective supporting emerging companies and higher risk projects.
Many critical and market successes – in Ontario and around the world –
would not have been possible without the support of the CNMF.

have already engaged key policy makers at the provincial and federal
levels, in an effort to gather more information regarding the potential
cuts, and also to gain information regarding programmes and funding
that could ultimately replace the CNMF.

It is of the utmost
importance that the Canadian government supports domestic creators of
Interactive Media content so that this exciting industry may continue
to flourish in a province rich with innovation, new ideas, and
intellectual property. IO and the CIAIC will continue work on your
behalf to ensure our collective concerns are heard. 

As a marketer in the interactive space, I firmly believe that we all benefit from the innovation that comes through funding like the CNMF.  I encourage you to tap into one of the interactive industry groups to stay informed about the funding of this industry, particularly as we move towards a fall election.  Here’s a list:

Also, Canada’s National Digital Media Day is coming up on September 25, 2008Get involved on the social network over at Ning or join the Facebook group to stay up to date about events in your area!