Carleton University’s School of Journalism will host a panel discussion with members of Canada’s legacy media on Tuesday to discuss their role in covering what the school calls “the siege of Ottawa.”

The Ottawa university describes its event – titled “Journalism Under Siege” – as “one of the first public events to reflect on the role of the media during the unprecedented occupation of downtown Ottawa.”

The panel’s members are expected to discuss the challenges journalists faced while covering the Freedom Convoy. Members of the public will also have the opportunity to contribute to the discussion.

The panel will feature legacy-media figures including CTV News’s Glen McGregor and left-wing investigative journalist Justin Ling.

Other panellists include CBC’s Judy Trinh and Jorge Barrera, the Toronto Star’s Raisa Patel and photographer Justin Tang. 

Journalism associate professor and CBC News anchor Adrian Harewood will be moderating the panel.

The Carleton University event has received criticism for its apparent exclusion of right-of-centre and independent journalists, who played a crucial role in covering the Freedom Convoy. 

True North’s Sue Ann Levy called out Carleton University on Twitter, saying the school – her own alma mater – had taught her “how to get both sides of the story.”

Levy added that the panel is “just one giant echo chamber that will reinforce their narcissistic view of their own importance and the very pack mentality that led to ‘mean words’ being hurled at them during the Freedom protests.”

True North has, however, learned that one right-of-centre journalist received an invitation to the panel, but only after the initial event information was put out.

Columnist Rupa Subramanya, who contributes to the National Post, The Wall Street Journal as well as other outlets, told True North she received a late invitation to join.

Subramanya said she asked organizers why she was given a late invitation, for which she was told that the event had been organized quickly. She was also told that other panellists had recommended her participation to the organizers.

Subramanya told True North that she had been offered an apology for the late invitation but that she has not yet agreed to attend due to scheduling issues.

The Freedom Convoy changed the way Canadians perceive the legacy media, due to coverage many deemed to be one-sided.

Legacy-media journalists often repeated talking points similar to those of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who claimed the movement had racist elements and that the peaceful protests were violent and illegal.

This disinformation led Freedom Convoy organizers to ban outlets such as CBC and the Toronto Star from some of their press conferences.

Carleton’s media event is scheduled to take place at Ottawa’s Dominion-Chalmers Centre, which was formerly owned and operated by the progressivist United Church of Canada, which still hosts a congregation in the building.

Despite Ontario lifting most of its COVID-19 restrictions, including the vaccine passport, those who wish to attend the event will still have to show proof of double vaccination. Face masks will also be mandatory.


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