It Takes a Village - Help Us Help Our Community
Since 2014, our not-for-profit media team at Five Points Media has always been there for anybody in our community who needed media support or the ability to educate the public about an event, fundraiser, or issue. During that nine-year period, we have produced more than 300 community videos that we have donated fully to more than 180 charities, not-for-profit organizations, and benevolent community groups.
So far, since we started volunteering our time and resources, we have donated more than six hundred thousand dollars in services to our community.
We have also become the only truly progressive voice within the media that serves Barrie, Innisfil, and Oro-Medonte, as we have used our voice to support the 2SLGBTQI+ community, racial equality, the Indigenous community, women’s rights, equality for those living with disability, homelessness, the opioid crisis, animal shelters, and other serious issues that are often seen from only one side by local mainstream media.
We have also been credited by local charities and benevolent community groups for helping to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of donations to help those in need.
Our producers have also used our cameras and experience in journalism to expose crimes that were completely ignored by mainstream media. The perpetrators were connected people, and the victims were ignored because they had no voice.
They huffed, and they puffed, and they threatened, but in the end, as the evidence was exposed, all of these "powerful" people were held accountable.
We have exposed a fraudulent landlord who defrauded about 20 young single mothers through a rental scam, and also a slumlord who defrauded the province by renting an uninsulated trailer in which a disabled man died during winter. Currently, we are focusing our attention on a mortgage broker that is defrauding seniors through unauthorized fees and loanshark level interest rates. In each and all of these cases, no investigation was deemed warranted until we shone a spotlight on the obvious crimes being committed against vulnerable victims.
Our reporting on these stories is the only reason why any of these negligent abusers of trust and the law were held accountabile on any level.
Our dedication and support of our community were recognized in 2020 when our team was voted finalists for the "Paying It Forward" award for altruism that is presented each year by the Greater Barrie Chamber of Commerce and the City of Barrie. We have also been recognized through awards presented to us by the Women and Children's Shelter of Barrie and St. John Ambulance.
We do not donate our services for awards, but the recognition by prominent community groups shows the level of respect for the influence of our programs.
We have also earned our way to become recognized fully by the community and officials as a media source in our community, as can be seen by the fact that we have worked with all of government and services, from MPs and MPPs through to City level officials, the Barrie Police Service, Nottawasaga OPP, various fire departments and other emergency services, and even the military on Base Borden.
Something significant has now changed regarding Canadian media being granted access to online giants like Facebook and Google, and it could mean the end for our community programming.
On June 21, 2023, the federal government passed the bill known as C-18, which was pitched as “An act respecting online communications platforms that make news content available to persons in Canada.” It is in simple terms a click tax on those who provide access to online information that will be charged whenever somebody using their site or service clicks on a link to mainstream Canadian media.
Although it was meant to help struggling Canadian newspapers, it has done nothing but harm to every form of media, including our fully-donated services.
Google and Facebook responded by clearing all links within their systems of Canadian news and media content, and then blocking their ability to be shared through organic shares on their platforms. The only way we can now spread the word of the charities and other benevolent groups we are delighted to assist is by boosting our posts, and we simply cannot afford to do that for fully donated community programs.
Mainstream media has income from advertising, but as we are a fully independent media source that is truly accountable to our community, we self-finance, which means all of the costs are paid by us.
We do not charge for our community services, so if we have to pay to boost while this silly political war continues, we have little choice but to focus only on what earns us an income, like our new documentary about loansharking in Innisfil that is drawing more traffic than we dreamed was possible as seniors groups are spreading the word for us via email and other means. No matter what, we will continue to try to support our community and local charities, not-for-profits, and benevolent community groups, as we have during the past nine years. However, without help to boost our charitable messages, we will be seen by only a small fraction of our previous community channel audience. This will directly affect our influence within the community and our effectiveness in fundraising and educating the public about those in need and the groups that support them.
We know this contest between our government and the media giants will not last forever, but six months of this will cost us thousands that our not-for-profit does not have.
We want to continue being Barrie's only independent voice and we want to continue helping local charities, not-for-profits, and benevolent community groups through fully-donated programming, as we have done for the past nine years. However, now we need your help, as there is no point in us continuing to donate community programming if nobody is going to see it. To us, as a not-for-profit community media service, boosting these videos for local programming about charities is now as vital as a shelter receiving a donation of food.
We have helped a lot of people in our community, and we want to continue to do so, but we understand if you cannot help us in return. Regardless, if you like our work and want us to continue to help our community, please share our post so that others in your friends, work, family, church, community groups, etc. we see it and possible help us. We thank you for your support. You can share our Facebook Post by clicking here.