News about news
These are the five victims killed at @capgaznews today.
Rob Hiaasen https://t.co/CBJAVUuJNQ
Wendi Winters https://t.co/kKhVllQWWb
Gerald Fischman https://t.co/bmYvTdDBwd
Rebecca Smith https://t.co/3cM4VhG0q9
John McNamara https://t.co/vCRaIUIzAB pic.twitter.com/55Jeu3UhSh
— Kevin Rector (@RectorSun) June 29, 2018
- Five people were killed in a shooting at the Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland. The shooter is identified as a man who had a long grudge against the paper. Remaining staff kept producing the paper.
- Postmedia is making more cuts to its news operations as the company (my employer) continues to struggle financially with declining print ad revenue. It’s closing six community newspapers, making three others online-only (which, in the past, has only delayed the inevitable), and reducing print frequency for a 10th. All 10 affected papers were bought in the Sun Media deal and have long histories of ownership changes, with owners like Thomson, Hollinger, Osprey, Otter, Bowes, Newcap and Annex. Postmedia as a whole wants to cut 10 per cent of its salary base, which means another round of buyouts to unionized staff (including those at the Montreal Gazette), and possibly layoffs if those don’t reach that target. Community papers being cut are:
- The Daily Graphic in Portage La Prairie,
Alta.Man., is ending its print edition but will remain as an online-only publication.
- The Camrose Canadian in Camrose, Alta. The Canadian’s last issue will be Aug. 9.
- The High River Times in High River, Alta., is dropping from twice a week to weekly. It just brought in a new intern, which it’s sharing with two other local papers.
- The Ingersoll Times in Ingersoll, Ont., is shutting down. Its last issue is July 11. It is redirecting readers to the Woodstock Sentinel Review, based 15km away.
- The Kapuskasing Times (aka Kapuskasing Northern Times) in Kapuskasing, Ont., is shutting down. Its last issue is July 26.
- The Northern News in Kirkland Lake, Ont., is dropping from three days a week to one (Postmedia has this listed as going online-only, so I’m not sure if that weekly edition is a print one).
- The Norwich Gazette in Norwich, Ont., is shutting down. Its last edition is July 11. Like the Ingersoll Times, it is redirecting readers to the Woodstock Sentinel Review. Woodstock is 20km from Norwich.
- The Pembroke Observer in Pembroke, Ont., is shutting down its print edition but will remain online. Its final issue is July 28.
- The Petrolia Topic in Petrolia, Ont., is shutting down. Its last issue is July 11, five months short of its 100th anniversary. It’s redirecting readers to the Sarnia Observer, based 23km away.
- The Strathmore Standard in Strathmore, Alta., is shutting down. Its last issue is July 25.
- The Daily Graphic in Portage La Prairie,
- The New York Times has a story about one of its own journalists, Ali Watkins, being in hot water after it was discovered she was having an affair with a senior official on the Senate Intelligence Committee (which she covers as a national security specialist). She said she didn’t use him as a source, and he denies giving any information to journalists, but it’s an obvious red flag.
- The Canadian Journalism Foundation has posted videos from its awards gala. A highlight is this one of Robyn Doolittle asking journalists to support each other.
- Facebook is “partnering” with Agence France-Presse to limit the spread of fake news on its platform in Canada. Though some might see a Liberal conspiracy afoot, the bigger question for me is whether AFP has the resources or the interest to stamp out every Canadian fake news story out there.
- Politico is coming to Canada. Not to cover Canadian politics per se, but more to cover how the Canada-U.S. relationship affects U.S. politics. It has hired Alex Panetta, former Washington bureau chief for The Canadian Press, to join the project.
- The Toronto Star’s Kathy English points to a study that shows western media is not paying enough attention to the developing world.
At the CRTC
- Cartt.ca editor Greg O’Brien (full disclosure: he pays me often to write for him) appeared on The Agenda with Steve Paikin to talk internet taxes.
- The commission has published the application by Cogeco to acquire 10 radio stations in Quebec from RNC Media, and set a Sept. 6 hearing for it (a formality with no requirement that the applicant be present). I’ve summarized details of the application in this post, including what brands are changing hands.
- In another example of how much the commission gives passes to Native Type B stations in Canada, it has given a five-year licence renewal to CFRZ-FM in Walpole Island, Ontario, despite what can only be described as a refusal to cooperate with the CRTC process. Besides a simple web form application for renewal, the commission has had no contact whatsoever with the licensee during the process, but decided to approve a renewal anyway. As the decision notes, the station’s licensee:
- Has not filed the past four years of annual returns
- Has not confirmed the installation of an emergency public alerting system
- Has failed to respond to multiple letters, emails and voicemails by the commission requesting information
- Licences have been renewed for a full seven years for:
- CKOB-FM Trois-Rivières (106,9fm Mauricie)
- CJFY-FM Miramichi, N.B. (Life Radio)
- CHRI-FM Ottawa (Family Radio)
- Quebec Press Council:
- Journalists are allowed to block people on Twitter, mainly because Twitter accounts are personal.
- Journal de Québec columnist Lise Ravary should not have blamed the Harper government for the Omar Khadr interrogation since it happened before it took office.
- Journal de Montréal columnist Richard Martineau should have been more careful in questioning Khadr’s status as a child soldier.
- CJSO-FM 101.7 in Sorel should have checked with the city before going with a story about it, and should have been more proactive about correcting the record when the city pointed out it was incorrect.
- A divided panel reviewing a Tout le monde en parle discussion about Canada’s gun laws found by a narrow majority that host Guy A. Lepage exercises a journalistic function as interviewer and it is within the mandate of the council to review it.
- Canadian Broadcast Standards Council: The Canal Vie talk show La belle gang did not breach any rules but probably should have been clearer with its viewer advisories before a segment interviewing a swinger porn star.
- The Globe and Mail’s Sylvia Stead once again tackles anonymous sources, and notes some examples of where the Globe has used them properly and improperly.
— Peter Armstrong (@armstrongcbc) June 28, 2018
- Corus Entertainment says it will have “fewer, better” TV channels as it considers short-term changes to the way it operates in the wake of a nearly billion-dollar loss. Corus owns 37 specialty channels plus a majority stake in Telelatino and its family of channels.
- CBC Television has announced its fall premiere dates. Most series come back the week starting Sept. 18.
- TSN has published its schedule of live mic CFL games for this season. The next one is Ottawa at Montreal next Friday. The schedule is evenly distributed among all nine CFL teams. There’s also a new ref cam, which debuted with Saturday’s Alouettes-Roughriders game.
- France’s Canal Plus is pulling the plug on its subscription service CanalPlay, and blaming the regulatory environment for it.
- CBS has extended its deal with the National Football League to include mobile streaming rights until 2022. Until last season, Verizon had the exclusive rights to mobile streaming of NFL games. Now those rights are non-exclusive, and the networks that carry games on TV have the rights to stream them on mobile.
- Disney has agreed to sell 21st Century Fox‘s 22 regional sports networks as a condition of its $71.3-billion acquisition. Fox Sports regional channels broadcast the regional games of 12 National Hockey League teams, the most of any of the regional networks.
CBC has applied to #CRTC for a new transmitter in Belleville, Ontario, retransmitting CBO-FM (Radio One) Ottawa. 10kW, 104.7 FM. Fills hole in network between Kingston and Peterborough. (Filing docs suggest it originally planned for it to retransmit Toronto station) pic.twitter.com/p26R1D52Yy
— Steve Faguy (@fagstein) June 29, 2018
- CBC Radio One is looking to fill a hole in its network with a transmitter northeast of Belleville, Ontario. Its frequency of 104.7 MHz is the same as a station in Syracuse, N.Y., which limits its coverage, but it fills a gap between Kingston and Peterborough on the network. The new transmitter, if approved, would rebroadcast CBO-FM in Ottawa.
- Rogers is launching what it’s calling the Frequency Podcast Network with The Big Story, a daily (weekday) 15-minute podcast where each episode tackles a single topic.
- Meanwhile, Corus has reached a deal with The Podcast Exchange to have the latter sell the former’s podcasts in Canada and the U.S.
- The news is getting worse at JAZZ.FM91 in Toronto as a major sponsor pulls its ads.
- Canadaland is pulling the plug on its arts and culture podcast The Imposter.
- Torstar is laying off 21 people at its StarMetro operations, only two months after crowing about hiring 20 more people during the rebrand of Metro. Among those out of work is national columnist Vicky Mochama.
- As announced in May, the Toronto Star has reactivated its paywall. It joins the Globe and Mail, Postmedia, Le Devoir and the Winnipeg Free Press among those newspapers and groups that have walled off access to their content.
- The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is cutting its print schedule from seven to five days a week (it hasn’t said yet which days). It will produce an electronic edition the other days.
- The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is upgrading an auditorium to become a movie screening room, which will open this fall as another place Montrealers can watch quality films.
- Virgin Radio Montreal is doing its movies in the park thing again. Here’s the schedule:
- July 11 – Empire Park in Greenfield Park – Paddington 2
- July 25 – Centennial Park in Dollard-Des-Ormeaux – Ready Player One
- Aug. 8 – Recreation Centre in TMR – Ferdinand
- Aug. 22 – George O’Rielly Park in Verdun – Ocean’s 8
- The Gazette has an even longer list of outdoor film screenings this summer.
- The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the Music Modernization Act, a bipartisan bill designed to improve the system of royalty payments to music artists.’
- The Grammys are expanding the number of nominees for major categories from five to eight.
- Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly has announced her government’s creative export strategy, which appears to consist mainly of giving more money to organizations that already promote Canadian culture abroad, and creating a new vaguely-defined $7-million-a-year fund that can be tapped to help Canadian content producers export abroad.
- Radio-Canada tried a different kind of fall launch event this summer.
- The BBC has apologized for underpaying its former China editor Carrie Grace. Grace said she will donate the back pay to an organization that fights for pay equity.
News about people
After 16 years today is my last day at the @mtlgazette I am leaving the first real job I had out of university and it’s been quite a ride. But a new adventure awaits as of next week. -30- pic.twitter.com/Q2zw5gK28J
— Kevin Mio (@KevMio) June 28, 2018
- Copy editor Kevin Mio has left the Montreal Gazette for a new job to be announced shortly.
- Mike Richards, a former host at TSN 1050 in Toronto, has decided to torch that bridge and go tell-all about what happened there. He does not pull his punches about the decisions taken there that he disagrees with and that he thinks were purposefully done to screw him.
- Global News has hired Mercedes Stephenson as its Ottawa bureau chief and host of weekly political talk show The West Block. Stephenson was until recently a reporter with CTV News. The West Block lost its previous host, Vassy Kapelos, when she was hired to host Power and Politics on CBC.
- CTV Montreal anchor Mutsumi Takahashi is among those being inducted into the Order of Canada. Consistent with her humble nature, the story merited a 37-second brief on the evening newscast.
- The Gazette’s Bill Brownstein talks to former CJAD host Tommy Schnurmacher about his new writing project.
- Tony Grace, anchor of CTV News Barrie has left for a job in the Ottawa valley (he says his Twitter account won’t change, which suggests he’ll still be with CTV). He got the chance to say goodbye to viewers on air.
- Christa Dickenson has been named the new executive director of Telefilm Canada.
- Former B.C. premier Christy Clark is joining the board of directors of Shaw.
- Ron Nicolson has retired as radio newscaster at CBC Calgary.
- The Globe and Mail’s Christine Dobby has a very good profile of Telus CEO Darren Entwistle.
- Lessons for journalists in how to reduce the ideological divide. It’s long, but the last paragraph summarizes it: “Journalists need to learn to amplify contradictions and widen the lens on paralyzing debates. We need to ask questions that uncover people’s motivations. All of us, journalists and non-journalists, could learn to listen better. As researchers have established in hundreds of experiments over the past half-century, the way to counter the kind of tribal prejudice we are seeing is to expose people to the other tribe or new information in ways they can accept. When conflict is cliché, complexity is breaking news.”
- Scott Stinson goes behind the scenes during a TSN World Cup broadcast.
- Associate editor, Maisonneuve magazine (deadline: July 3)
- Editor-in-chief, MAtv Montreal (deadline: July 6)
- Social media manager, MAtv Montreal (deadline: July 6)
- Business reporter at The Canadian Press in Montreal (deadline: July 9)
- Executive producer, investigative at CBC in Toronto