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COMN 1000, ‘Introduction
to Communications’, 2012-13


The final essay will be 1500-2000 words in length (6 pages, double-spaced,
12 point font, 1 inch margins, not including footnotes and bibliography

Plagiarism of
any written assignment is punishable by failure of the course.
sure to hand in both an electronic copy and a paper copy of your paper
, and
be sure to save your research notes and rough drafts.


1. Provide an overview of the
structure and operation of the feature film industry in Canada. Historically,
what have been the major problems/issues facing this industry and Canadian
feature film? Realistically, what might be done about these problems? Given the
history and current situation what do you think the future holds for the
Canadian feature film industry?

2. What roles can community
media play in providing alternatives to dominant media sources? What challenges
or limitations do community media face, including those resulting from
commercial pressures and influences? Starting from these general questions,
develop a case study of one specific community media source.

3. What is concentration of
media ownership? Why is it an issue in Canada? Is allowing foreign companies to
hold majority ownership of Canadian media companies a possible solution to this
problem? Why or why not?

4. Historically, what role
has the CBC played in the Canadian broadcasting system? With the proliferation
of communications technology, and what some claim to be ever expanding choice
in media products, is there a future for the CBC and public broadcasting?

5. What are “Canadian
content” regulations? Why were they implemented? How do they operate? Have they
been successful? Why or why not? Should they be replaced by some other mode of
regulation? Should they just be dropped? Discuss.

6. What is “media
imperialism”? Focusing your research either on Canada or another
country/region, discuss how media imperialism manifests itself there. What are
the ways in which that country or region has responded to this perceived
threat? Are there limits to the concept of ‘media imperialism?

7. What is the National
Film Board (NFB)? What role has it played in the development of film in Canada?
What issues currently face it? What do role do you think the NFB should play in
the future?

Grading criteria

  • Understanding of the course material and
    ability to explain and use the sources effectively; selection of relevant
    outside sources, awareness of the nature of the sources, and effective use.
  • Clarity of presentation
    (see ‘essay format’ above). Especially important is a clear overall
    argument, supported by evidence, and taking into consideration the
    different and often competing arguments offered by the authors.
  • Effective use of
    any relevant course concepts.
  • Effectively
    addressing any comments made on the essay proposal/outline.
  • Originality of

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