News about news
— Tonda MacCharles (@TondaMacC) January 7, 2019
- The Canadian Press is eliminating its French-language radio headlines service, as well as its newsroom video editing service. The latter will instead be outsourced to Pagemasters North America, which may hire (at less favourable working conditions) some but not all of the talented people losing their jobs.
- Vice is not giving up in its legal battle with the RCMP over an order for journalist Ben Makuch to hand over data related to communications with an Islamic State fighter. Vice’s lawyers are now arguing the order should be quashed because the fighter in question is dead.
- The union representing workers at La Presse has reached a deal in principle with the employer on a new contract. It will be presented to members on Jan. 22.
- A recently released study looked at how much of a presence public relations has in news articles from Quebec newspapers, repeating (with some improvements) a similar 1988 study. Although the headline is that more stories have some PR elements in them, a key finding is that the percentage of stories that come from a single PR source has dropped by more than half. It’s also worth noting that a lot of things count as PR here, from attending a press conference to stuff posted on Twitter to getting a quote from a spokesperson. I might argue that as organizations have gotten bigger over the pas 30 years, the use of more formalized PR has become a necessity, and is not necessarily indicative of some sort of problem. (Another finding is that, based on a sample size of two editions, La Presse tends to have more sources per article than the Journal de Montréal.)
- The Globe and Mail is opening a bureau in Thunder Bay, and will even have its editorial board move there briefly.
- The Fédération professionnelle des journalistes du Québec has backtracked on a decision to eliminate the “local and regional” news category from its annual awards, after an outcry from members.
- New legislation proposed by the Ford government in Ontario could cause major problems for student media at Ontario universities. The legislation would make it mandatory for students to be able to opt out of fees for student activities, like student newspapers and radio stations.
- Canadian University Press held its annual national conference this month, and handed out its John H. McDonald Awards for student journalism. Next year’s conference will be in Montreal.
- Concordia University journalism students have voted to strike for a week to protest against unpaid internships. The date of the strike is unclear, meant to coincide with a larger student strike. Note that the strike means not going to classes. It’s unclear how it would affect the internships themselves. The journalism department is reviewing rules that require that for-credit internships be unpaid only.
- It’s Canadian Women’s Hockey League All-Star weekend, which means we have the annual why-doesn’t-women’s-hockey-get-enough-attention story. Meanwhile the CWHL is making covering the game itself difficult for journalists. The game will be broadcast Sunday at 1:30pm on Sportsnet.
- A fake Washington Post newspaper showed up at protests in D.C. claiming Donald Trump had resigned. Obviously the Post was unamused.