Reply to DOXA Festival

May 10, 2013 § Leave a comment

Hello David,
I flat out do not believe that having Rogers (in any form) as a corporate partner could never affect your programming decisions.  By putting their logo on your posters you de-legitimize the festival in lots of peoples’ eyes, mine especially.  Your festival is clearly not independent and grassroots if it has a corporate logo on the poster.
Remember: as a rule only a minimum of one out of ten people will actually complain–the rest will simply silently take their money somewhere else, so I am just one of many people who won’t be buying tickets because of your association with Rogers.  This means that, although your tickets may be cheaper, fewer people will be attending your festival due to the sponsorship.  I suppose that’s a tradeoff you’re willing to make.
I think it is a cop-out for you to say that you couldn’t put on an affordable festival without corporate sponsors.  You could organize fundraising concerts, start an indiegogo campaign, cut costs by using a cheaper venue, or show the films outdoors.
By allowing the Rogers logo on your posters you contribute to the senseless saturation of our mental environment with corporate iconography.  You also lend support to price gouging, corporate spying and electromagnetic pollution.  Also, by allowing them to sponsor your festival, you allow Rogers to be associated with something good — a documentary festival — which allows them to deflect attention from the price gouging, corporate spying and electromagnetic pollution they’re responsible for.
I noticed you mentioned that Rogers gives money to “independent media producers”; well, the moment media producers accept money from Rogers they cease to be independent.  You are the corporate documentary festival, and you can count me out.



Reply From DOXA Festival

May 10, 2013 § Leave a comment

Hey G,

I just wanted to take a moment to respond to your email.  I’m the Director of Development at DOXA so I handle all our relationships with sponsors and donors.
In terms of our relationship with Rogers, we have received funding from the Rogers Group of Funds since 2008 and they have been our Presenting Partner since 2009.  Rogers Group of Funds is a separate entity from Rogers Telecom with separate management and a different board of directors.  The funds are endorsed by the Canadian Media Producers Association and Telefilm Canada – who also happen to be sponsors of the festival.  They deliver $9 million in funding annually specifically targeted to independent media producers.
One thing that DOXA prides itself on is the freedom and independence we have in our programming.  Rogers Group of Funds has no say in what we program and to address your specific concern if a documentary came into the festival on any of the three topics you mentioned we would show it without hesitation as long as it met our submission criteria and was of high enough quality.
Sponsorship dollars don’t influence our programming at all, indeed there were several films submitted this year that came with sponsors already in tow, or that I knew could easily attract sponsors but we chose not to screen them because they weren’t high enough quality or weren’t a match programatically for other reasons.
The one way our sponsors do influence the festival is by keeping our ticket prices down.  Without the support of our cash and in-kind sponsors a single ticket to the festival wouldn’t be $12, it would be approximately $32.  One of our mandates is to keep the festival as accessible as possible and our sponsors, along with government funders, help us do that.
I hope that this has shed some light on our programming independence and the limits our sponsors have on influencing the festival’s content.
If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to be in touch.
David Bremner
Director of Development

DOXA Documentary Film Festival

DOXA Festival — Shame on You for Accepting Corporate Sponsorship

May 10, 2013 § Leave a comment


I just wanted somebody to know that I’ll be skipping this year’s festival because of your association with Rogers.  I’m sick of seeing their ads everywhere and hearing their name every time someone mentions where the Canucks play.  Also, I find it hard to believe you would be impartial about choosing which docs to feature considering your main sponsor.  For example, what if someone made a doc about mobile phone price gouging in Canada, or big telecom spying on Canadians, or the effects of electrohypersensitivity?

Otherwise I would love to support your festival, since I love documentaries.

Thanks I guess,


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