Blame Canada!

One of the most anticipated panels at SxSWi, at least for the Canadian contingent (and wow are there ever a lot of us here) was the Blame Canada panel, moderated by Kris Krug from Raincity Studios.

The content was, about as we expected. With quick overviews of the tech companies many don’t realize are Canadian (RIM, StumbleUpon, iStockPhoto, and Flickr for example) a geography lesson and a bit of controversy from an unnamed, behemoth software company, Blame Canada gave us an overview of our innovation here without getting too deep.

There are more Canadian/US partnerships than there are East/West, which makes me wonder if we either view each other as competition somehow or whether we still think that the US is where success can be found.

There was animated discussion of the funding models used in Canada vs in the US; Canada’s primary model of government funding can actually be a detriment to Canadian companies who are focusing on being competitive. The way to fix this will be to develop, or find, a private/public source of funding that will help make companies be hungrier for competition.

The panel ended with a rah rah Canada sentiment – we’re a viable place to work and we’ve made several fantastic contributions to new media and technology. All in all, Canada rocks. Which, we knew.

photo by dvanvliet