Digital Media at the Crossroads

An Annual Conference on the Future of Content in Digital Media

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What’s in the Future for Canadian Creators?


DAY ONE: Friday, January 25, 2019

Location: MacMillan Theatre, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto

1:20 p.m.


2:00 p.m.

Welcome and Introduction: Don McLean, Dean, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto

2:10 p.m.

The Digital Media Universe in Canada: Measuring the Revenues, the Audiences, and the Future Prospects

In 2016 and 2018, the DM@X conference commissioned a special report from Nordicity to review revenues, employment and future trends in each sector of the digital media universe in Canada. In this presentation, Nordicity will update the numbers in its reports and will outline the projected future for Canadian production in the audiovisual, music, publishing and game sectors.

pdf icon The Digital Media Universe in Canada Final Report


Peter Lyman, Senior Partner, Julie Whelan, Senior Manager, and Megan Lynch, Senior Analyst, Nordicity Group Limited, Toronto

3:15 p.m.

Refreshment Break

3:30 p.m.

Copyright Policy and New Technology

On October 31, 2018, the government announced revisions to the Copyright Act to address the procedural and structural challenges faced by the Copyright Board, with streamlined timelines for decisions. The Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology has also started Phase II of a full statutory review of the Copyright Act. How will these developments affect copyright collectives and users? How will they affect the business model for music and other streaming services? And do they affect the proposal from Fairplay Canada to allow blocking of piratical websites, a proposal that was rejected by the CRTC on jurisdictional grounds? This panel provides an update on these issues.


Catherine Moore, Adjunct Professor, Music Technology & Digital Media Program, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto


Erin Finlay, Former Chief Legal Officer, Canadian Media Producers Association

Daniel G.C. Glover, Partner, McCarthy Tétrault LLP, Co-author, User’s Guide to Canadian Copyright Tariffs

Jason J. Kee, Counsel, Public Policy and Government Relations, Google Canada

5:00 p.m.

Digital Media Live Performance

At the conclusion of the first day of the DM@X conference, there will be a digital media live performance by Professor Eliot Britton in MacMillan Theatre followed.

5:15 p.m.


At the conclusion of the performance a networking reception will be held on the main level of the Faculty of Music.

DAY TWO: Saturday, January 26, 2019

Location: Walter Hall, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto

8:20 a.m.


9:00 a.m.

How Are Over-the-Top Video Services like Netflix and Amazon Prime Supporting Canadian Film and Television?

With the rise of “over-the-top” Internet video services, the question of their contribution to Canadian content has risen to the top. An expert panel has been appointed to review the current broadcasting and telecommunications legislation. Should Canadian content focus on reaching a global market? What options are being considered? What are the implications for digital media?


Charles Falzon, Dean, Faculty of Communication and Design, Ryerson University


Dr. Stuart Cunningham, Distinguished Professor, Media and Communications, Queensland University of Technology, Australia

pdf icon Dr. Stuart Cunningham Notes

Emily Harris, Senior Vice-President, Business & Legal Affairs, Entertainment One

Gave Lindo, Executive Director, OTT Programming, CBC Television

Neal McDougall, Director of Policy, Writers Guild of Canada

10:30 a.m.

Refreshment Break

10:45 a.m.

What to Do About Google and Facebook News

This panel addresses the crisis facing the print media in Canada, as print ad revenue declines and digital ad revenue migrates to foreign websites like Google and Facebook. What can be done? What other steps are in progress to help the cause of Canadian journalism?


Jesse Langdon, Vice-President and General Counsel, Globe and Mail, Toronto


Steven Barnett, Professor of Communications, University of Westminster, London, UK

pdf icon Steve Barnett Presentation

Josh Merchant, Senior Vice President Product & Development, Postmedia Network Inc.

Neil Oliver, Executive Vice President Torstar and President of Daily News Brands

Kelly Wilhelm, former Senior Policy Advisor, Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage

12:15 p.m.

Networking Break and Buffet Luncheon (provided)

Registrants will be assigned randomly to tables in a number of breakout rooms. Facilitators at each table will animate the discussion and will seek views on a variety of policy questions.

1:30 p.m.

Luncheon Address: How European Audiovisual Policy is Addressing the World of the Internet

The Audiovisual Media Services Directive (AVMS) issued by the European Parliament governs broadcasting in the European Union. Recent prospective amendments apply to internet platforms and would require investment in European audiovisual works, and protection of minors. In this address, an expert from the European Union will provide an update on the European situation.


Anna Herold, Head of Unit, Audiovisual and Media Policy for the Digital Single Market, European Commission, Brussels

2:15 p.m.

A “Town Hall Meeting” with the Broadcasting and Telecommunications Legislative Review Panel

In June 2018, the Government of Canada appointed an expert panel to review Canada’s broadcasting and telecommunications legislation. The review seeks to examine issues such as telecommunications and content creation in the digital age, net neutrality, cultural diversity and ways to strengthen the future of Canadian media and content creation, The Panel, made up of seven experts, is expected to publish its final report in January 2020. The panel will be consulting widely with Canadians. As part of its outreach, members of the panel have agreed to attend the DM@X conference and to participate in a “town hall” meeting where they can hear the views of digital media students and other millennials about the issues it needs to address.


Trina McQueen, Bell Media Professor, MBA Program in Arts, Media and Entertainment Management, Schulich School of Business, York University


Janet Yale, Chair, Broadcasting and Telecommunications Legislative Review Panel

Other Panel Members that will be present are Peter S. Grant, Hank Intven, Marina Pavlović, Monique Simard, Monica Song and Pierre Trudel

4:15 p.m.

Refreshment Break

4:30 p.m.

Reports from the Networking Breaks

The results of the discussions at each networking table will be summarized.


Doug Barrett, Adjunct Professor, MBA Program in Arts, Media and Entertainment Management, Schulich School of Business, York University

4:45 p.m.

Closing Wrapup


Don McLean, Dean, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto

5:00 p.m.

Termination of Program