My complaint sent August 16, 2015:
There is often a thin line separating hard-hitting political satire and outright political activism. Through some of his recent actions on Twitter, I believe This Hour Has 22 Minutes personality and CBC humour columnist Mark Critch has crossed that line, and has compromised his professional obligation, as a CBC representative, to avoid clear and unambiguous partisan activity.
On August 12, Mr. Critch wrote a series of tweets intended to provoke opposition to Conservative candidate Paul Calandra.
His actions were described by other media as an unambiguous activist campaign, for example, in the August 14, 2015 story by The Canadian Press: Mark Critch launches Twitter campaign against MP Paul Calandra.
CBC policy 2.2.17 states that “News, current affairs and public affairs personnel who are subject to CBC/Radio-Canada’s Journalistic Standards and Practices (“JSPs”) may not engage in designated political activities,” which “designated political activities” being previously defined in the same policy as “publicly supporting a candidate or political party,” among other things.
I believe that a reasonable reading of 2.2.17 would classify Mr. Critch’s actions towards Mr. Calandra as unacceptable “political activities” as Mr. Critch was waging a campaign of overt opposition to Mr. Calandra for reasons that were not satirical or humorous in purpose, but simply rooted in Mr. Critch’s personal dislike for Mr. Calandra’s conduct as a politician.
Mr. Critch should be suspended from commenting on his CBC Twitter account and CBC News until he apologises and admits his comments and actions broke CBC policy.
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