CKMI cuts News Final in half

Global Quebec's new news set

CKMI-TV, a.k.a. Global Quebec a.k.a. Global Montreal, has cut its one-hour 11pm newscast down to 30 minutes.

“What we’ve heard from viewers is that at that time of day they prefer a more compact formula that provides them with all the news of the day but that they just can’t stay up that late,” station manager Karen Macdonald tells Fagstein. “So… Local, national and international news as well as sports and weather from 11 to 11:30 p.m.”

The second half of the hour on weeknights is being filled with HGTV’s Designer Guys.

The format of the condensed News Final gives about as much local stories as the previous one did. Local news makes up the first 10 minutes of the newscast. The second 10-minute segment has national and international news, plus weather (still done out of Toronto), and the final segment has sports (still done out of Vancouver) and other stories.

By the numbers

The newscast slashing comes mere days after CKMI’s licence renewal, which dropped its local programming minimum from 18 hours a week to 14 (consistent with large markets across the country).

The cut drops 2.5 hours a week of original programming from the station (the weekend 11pm newscasts were already 30 minutes long). With a half-hour Evening News and half-hour News Final every day, plus the half-hour Focus Montreal once a week, CKMI is producing a grand total of 7.5 hours of original local programming a week (assuming you count local newscasts produced out of Vancouver as “local programming”).

How are they filling the other 6.5 hours? Repeats.

According to the station’s schedule, CKMI re-runs the Evening News and News Final the morning after at 6am and 6:30am, respectively. (Except that’s not what’s been happening this week. Instead, CKMI has been running News Final twice back-to-back. It’s not a huge deal since the station isn’t seriously trying to attract viewers at that time, and the contents of the two newscasts are mostly the same, but still.)

The morning repeats add seven hours of local programming to the broadcast schedule, bringing the total to 14.5 hours.

8 thoughts on “CKMI cuts News Final in half

  1. Horonymous

    What a joke. Global, CTV and now the CBC have the gall to ask for money from cable and satellite customers. There is no local programming other than news. Shameful!

    I don’t fault the staff at the private broadcasters for this reductions in production but the twits in the ivory towers that have put Canadian television in this state by their greed in buying up as many TV properties so they can repeat all of the US programming they’ve bought.

  2. Anonymous

    Half of nothing is still nothing. How dare Global beg viewers to support its save local programming campaign. Using your figures, they produce ten minutes of local news a day. It is broadcast at 6pm and again at 11pm, then the 6pm and 11pm newscast is repeated at 6am and 6:30am the next morning complete with yesterday’s weather forecast and sports report.(from Toronto and Vancouver ).
    Somebody please explain to me what reason anyone would have for watching, never mind supporting this complete train wreck of a station.

  3. Jamie

    Meanwhile across the border Fox 44 expands its 10 PM newscast from a half hour to an hour. Why is it that the US economy is so much worse than ours yet their TV stations are perfectly fine?

    1. Fagstein Post author

      I don’t know if I’d describe them as “perfectly fine” – WVNY and WFFF share a news team, for one. But if you ask the question to Canadian networks, they would tell you that U.S. stations get money from U.S. cable and satellite companies for carrying their signals.

      1. Jamie

        Well it’s true that they share a news team, but in total the Burlington/Plattsburgh market has THREE newscasts. A market that size in Canada would be lucky to have just one.

        1. Fagstein Post author

          It’s a bit more complicated than that. The four stations in that market count Montreal as part of their viewership, and get ad money counting Montreal viewers of their programming (at least, where it’s not simultaneously substituted by a Canadian network – which has led to some cat-and-mouse schedule juggling in the past). That extra money helps.

          But I agree, there is a surprising amount of local journalism going on at those stations considering the size of the population.

          1. Anonymous

            Those US border stations do consider Montreal part of their market. But their local news casts are not focused on Montreal. I have not seen them run any Montreal ads during their newscasts. They cover their DMA #93 market. They cover their local news much better than CFCF, CKMI, CBMT do here in Montreal. Just sit down and watch WCAX, WPTZ, WFFF local news and see how much they put into local news. Especially WCAX-DT. There is no excuse for what is going on in the English stations in Montreal.

          2. Anonymous

            Plus just to add another point about local production. WCAX-DT even runs a secondary channel (3.1 is the main HD channel, 3.2 is the news and weather local SD channel) This 3.2 (marketed as WCAXtra) has taped news updates every 30 minutes. 24 hrs weather including for Montreal. Plus they do a full 10pm local newscast for those who can’t stay up late to see the news at 11pm. And, if the main 3.1 channel has a sports game running late, I have seen them do the local news on 3.2 so as to not have the sports event cancel the newscast. I would like to see which, if any Montreal broadcast station can even come close to what WCAX-DT is doing for it viewers.


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