Integral to the plot, and in no way gratuitous"? Constructing creative freedom in the liberalization of canadian content regulation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This article analyzes proceedings of the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council as a discourse on tensions between creative freedom and social responsibility. While scholarship on censorship emphasizes the productive and constructive dimensions of prohibitive regulation, this article explores the imbrications of a more permissive style of regulation and its targets.The council's administration of various self-regulatory codes tends to limit the potential overreach of social responsibility provisions. In particular, its reading practices allow remarkable authority to the coherence and integrity of screen realities. Ultimately, this weight on the "realistic" suggests the discursive and institutional complexity of liberalization. Rather than a simple movement from active intervention to passive permission, or a simple recognition of an already-formed creative freedom, the council follows a particular construction of creative freedom produced in readings that actively exclude specters of regulable irresponsibility, and that resonate provocatively with the "realism" mobilized in producers' claims to creative status.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)248-272
Number of pages25
JournalTelevision and New Media
Volume12
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2011
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Authorship
  • Content regulation
  • Creative status
  • Industry self-regulation
  • Realism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts

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