Yesterday, Canada’s state broadcaster ran a story ‘investigating’ how “Bell Media, Angus Reid and other Canadian brands halt ads on X amid extremism concerns.” The news comes after X owner Elon Musk filed a lawsuit against left-wing organization Media Matters for allegedly defaming the social media platform by manipulating its advertising algorithm.
On last night’s episode of The Ezra Levant Show, Ezra looked at how CBC did its best to import this story into Canada through a story by reporter Jonathan Montpetit.
Montpetit, who Ezra described as “Trudeau’s hatchet man at the CBC,” was targeting the prime minister’s latest enemy, Elon Musk.
Breaking down the “pretty boring, extremely long” 2,000-word story, Ezra came to the conclusion CBC was manufacturing news instead of reporting on it:
This was not an investigation by Jonathan Montpetit. That’s not the essence of this story. This was Jonathan Montpetit using his CBC letterhead to contact advertisers and basically, in the guise of interviewing them, actually threaten them.
I’ve seen this email before: ‘we see that your advertising next to racist accounts. Will you cancel your advertising? I’m doing a story on this, I need your reply in two hours.’
That’s not actually journalism. It pretends to be journalism, and the signature field in the email claims that Montpetit’s a journalist. But that’s not true, that is pressing a company — that’s making the news, that’s manufacturing the news. Pressing an advertiser with false information, ginned up by the CBC, which is a competitor to Twitter.
So CBC has two conflicts of interest. They’re government run, so they run errands for Trudeau. And second of all, they’re a competitor with Twitter.
And so this is not a news story; they have made the news. Which is, they have a couple of tweets they think are mean, they call up advertisers and say ‘we’re going to embarrass you in a story we’re gonna run tomorrow. You’ve got two hours to avow to disavow Elon Musk.’ And most of the advertisers, being conflict averse, say ‘OK fine. You’re right, you’re right, we’ll quit.’
Ta-da. You’ve just created the news story. That’s not investigative journalism, that’s a shakedown.