Tag Archives: TVA

TVA to replace Yoopa with TV version of QUB Radio

The fallout of the Bell-Quebecor war has another victim: Yoopa, which Bell pulled from its television service in retaliation for Quebecor’s Videotron pulling Bell channels Vrak and Z, is being shut down in January, replaced by a video version of Quebecor’s QUB Radio online radio service as of Jan. 11.

According to its annual filing with the CRTC, Yoopa had $2.6 million in revenue, all but $30,000 of which came from subscriptions, in 2021-22, and spent about $2 million on programming, a bit less than half of which was Canadian. It had 340,000 subscribers and a staff of three.

The loss leaves a hole for television targeting young children, though public broadcasters Radio-Canada and Télé-Québec devote much of their morning programming to programs for kids.

Meanwhile, Quebecor seems to be doubling down on its QUB Radio digital talk radio project, and will now be putting even more resources into it, even though it already has a 24/7 news channel in LCN. Quebecor doesn’t release ratings or financials for this online-only service so we have no idea if it’s successful. But it’s cheap, at least compared to the news programming we see on LCN.

Whether QUB Radio or its still-to-be-named TV version lasts is an open question. Honestly I’m a bit surprised it survived the latest round of media cuts at Quebecor.

In theory, QUB TV could apply to be a national news service, requiring other providers to carry it, but that would require having news bureaus and regular news updates, and the CRTC might have some questions if it tries to just piggyback on LCN’s resources to achieve that status.

Videotron will obviously embrace QUB Radio on TV. Bell is probably not interested. Whether others who carry Yoopa, like Cogeco, make the switch is an open question.

Desperate TVA cuts a third of its staff

In what the union representing TVA employees called “La journée la plus noire de notre histoire” (the darkest day of our history), the company announced on Thursday afternoon (after a leak from La Presse forced an order to halt trading on its stock) that it is eliminating 547 jobs, representing 31% of TVA Group’s current workforce.

Most of those jobs — 300 — will be in in-house productions through its TVA Productions subsidiary. Though most drama, variety and bid-budget primetime shows are already produced by independent companies, there are a few still done in-house, and three of them — game shows Le Tricheur and La Poule aux oeufs d’or plus trending-video magazine show VLOG — are being outsourced.

This leaves news and news-adjacent programming as the only stuff still done in-house. Newscasts, LCN, morning news/talk show Salut Bonjour, and some programs at TVA Sports.

The expectation is that many of the people working on producing these shows will be hired by the independent companies they will be outsourced to, and TVA “will begin discussions with its partners to encourage them to hire employees affected by the announced measures, according to their needs.”

But that doesn’t mean they’ll get the salary or benefits they did at TVA, and it probably means no longer being unionized.

What’s changing

So here’s a quick list of what has been announced:

Continue reading

How the new TVA Nouvelles saved journalism

Discussion panels!

Discussion panels!

Tonight was the premiere of a new format for TVA Nouvelles’s flagship 10pm newscast (you can watch the whole thing here). Trying to find a new model that was different from the boring single-anchor TV newscast, it brought in four columnists who comment about major news stories, and has become more of a panel discussion show about the news than a newscast.

But that’s not the only change. Here, in screenshots, are other things that TVA Nouvelles has that will save the TV news industry from that pesky Internet threat and make sure the kids keep watching.

Continue reading

Sun News Network 2012 debate translation highlights

This marks the second provincial election campaign in which TVA has decided to separate itself from the consortium that organizes televised leaders’ debates and go it alone with a series of one-on-one debates.

It almost didn’t happen. Pauline Marois and the Parti Québécois said no at first, wanting to limit her to the other, more traditional debate that aired on Radio-Canada and Télé-Québec. But she later relented.

You might recall that the Sun News Network, which like TVA is owned by Quebecor Media, also aired the TVA face-à-face debates in 2012. Few people watched it on Sun News, but when a report about the debate that included two short clips were posted to Sun News’s website, it went a bit viral. The clips came to a total of about 23 seconds, and they were highlights picked by Sun News, so they didn’t show the worst parts.

Since the translated debates weren’t posted online, they might have been lost to history if not for one thing: I recorded all three hour-long debates on my PVR. And they’ve been sitting there ever since.

With the 2014 face-à-face debates only hours away, I recorded some clips from the debate and compiled them into eight minutes of highlights. The result is the video you see above.

A source at Sun News tells me that the network will air tonight’s debate, but that they have hired different translators.

I’ll be PVRing it anyway. Just in case.

TVA’s face-à-face debates air Thursday, March 27 from 8pm to 10pm on TVA and simultaneously translated on Sun News Network. It will also air on CPAC.

UPDATE: After posting the video to YouTube, I went in to clean the automatically-generated captions. But the captions generated for the debate clips were just so great that I couldn’t touch them. They include such gems as:

  • 2:06: “I wouldn’t victims contra months prego merman”
  • 5:28: “second spend your life getting minutes for me his / as Julia and modern yesterday sent / week with the mall butthead”
  • 6:14: “he added that the troops mister sister 20 as you go”
  • 6:34: “thank you so much as a queen of thank you so much musica”
  • 7:21: “and mister across america their leader / how to Chris you’re a doctor becker / he wouldn’t allow your the day all the balls we have”
  • 8:08: “going to help me fire a gritty / you lose my me I cannot do we”
  • 8:37: “your house layout so attacker 7,000 jobs that are you gonna cut people”
  • 8:49: “overheard the Cougar 30 Passa Passa”
  • 8:53: “I hope this exchange farewell lighting you for your torso”

Ethics don’t matter on TV

A couple of disturbing stories have come to light recently about Quebec television broadcasters’ attempts to censor things that might affect their bottom line.

The first was the revelation from La Presse’s Hugo Dumas that producers of dramatic programming for TVA were being asked to not show characters using iPhones. This, apparently, because Quebecor owns both TVA and Videotron and Videotron doesn’t offer the iPhone to wireless customers.

That prompted a reply from Quebecor VP Serge Sasseville that actually admitted Dumas’s story was true, but said that this was simply a case of a sponsor (Videotron) wanting its products depicted in the programming it sponsors. He offers the example of Ford sponsoring Radio-Canada’s series 19-2, and seeing Ford vehicles being driven in the show.

Dumas in turn replied to the reply, saying the argument seemed to suggest that Videotron sponsors all of TVA’s programming, and calling that reasoning preposterous.

Interference from a broadcaster into dramatic programming for business reasons is bad enough. But as Sasseville’s comparison points out, we’re well past that point already.

The second story is the decision of RDS to refuse to show a commercial from comedian Mike Ward that makes fun of the Canadiens. To be precise, they refused to show the ad during Canadiens games.

Their argument, and it’s a really stupid one, is that RDS is the official broadcaster of the Canadiens, and it’s unacceptable that an ad that runs during Canadiens games makes fun of them.

Some have noted that RDS is now owned by Bell, which is a stakeholder in the Canadiens and owns the naming rights to the Bell Centre, among many commercial deals between the telecom giant and the hockey team.

Both of these moves are ridiculous, and both reek of giant media empires abusing their ownership powers to mold programming in one area so it matches the business interests of another.

It’s not that many steps from this to each media giant having its own imaginary universe, each with its own set of maybe-true facts.

TVA journalist fired for plagiarizing Rue Frontenac

You probably didn’t know until this week about a journalist named Stéphane Malhomme.

It’s OK, though, because two years out of journalism school, and a month into a job as a web editor for Canoe, his journalism career is over.

In case you didn’t hear, Malhomme published an article on the website of Canal Argent, TVA’s business network, about this guy Martin Tremblay who is fighting the government over tax money he thinks he doesn’t owe them. Nothing particularly special about the story. It’s topped with a quote from Tremblay (from an “exclusive” interview on Argent), and has a bunch of background below.

The article has since been pulled, but Google Cache still has it, and it was republished through the Agence QMI service, and appeared in the Journal de Montréal.

It didn’t take long before the folks at Rue Frontenac, the website of the locked-out journalists and other workers at the Journal de Montréal, saw this piece and noticed that it bore a striking resemblance to one written by Martin Bisaillon that same day.

In fact, the resemblance was more than striking. Though the stories are not identical, some sentences and even entire paragraphs are. But Canoe’s story makes no reference to Rue Frontenac.

Rue Frontenac cried foul, and by the next day TVA apologized for the plagiarism and said it had fired Malhomme. (As a contract worker, Malhomme did not have job security from the union.)

Continue reading

Rue Frontenac on TVA

From TVA, Feb. 19

LCN’s website posted a story yesterday about Haitian prison escapee sneaking back into Quebec with evacuees. The Rue Frontenac kids protest that they broke the same story 10 days ago and the LCN story doesn’t mention them, saying only that “au cours des derniers jours, des journalistes montréalais se sont aussi intéressés à cette affaire.” (TVA and the Journal de Montréal are both owned by Quebecor, which has a reputation for not allowing its media assets to report anything that might put another in a bad light.)

In the video, though, which aired on TVA’s 6pm newscast Friday evening, you can see about the 1:40 mark a whopping two-second shot of Rue Frontenac’s website, focusing on the face of locked-out journalist Daniel Renaud. If you freeze-frame, you can even see the website’s address as part of his email underneath. (No mention of Renaud’s name or Rue Frontenac is made in the piece.)

So now locked-out Journal de Montréal journalists can say that the address “ruefrontenac.com” has appeared on TVA.

For two seconds.

Série Montréal-Québec: Flawless, says Journal

On Sunday, TVA debuted its newest Sunday-night populist attention-getter, the Série Montréal-Québec, in which 16 players from each city (each including two women, one guy over 40 and one guy over 50) compete in a meaningless eight-game tournament to determine which city is superior to the other.

I switched back and forth a bit between the TVA broadcast and an actual sporting event that actually mattered. What little I saw of the show consisted entirely of long, drawn-out American Idol-style (or, if you prefer, «Star Académie»-style) player introductions. It’s one thing when you’re introducing two or three people you’ve never met, but it gets old after the first few dozen.

Thankfully, I wasn’t the only one to notice that. Le Soleil’s Richard Therrien and La Presse’s Hugo Dumas showed an inspiring example of Quebec-Montreal unity by panning the show and its presentation devoid of any energy. The review from Dans ma télé’s Annie Fortin was lukewarm at best, with similar criticisms.

But then there’s the Journal de Montréal.

Journal de Montréal - Jan. 25, 2010

I find it ironic that Quebecor’s new Agence QMI put together an article (one written like a ninth-grade book report or the minutes of a school board meeting) that was good enough for both 24 Heures in Montreal and the Journal de Québec website, but the Journal de Montréal decided it needed to have one of its few remaining journalists- Michelle Coudé-Lord – write a redundant story reviewing the show (one, I should add, that was reprinted verbatim in the Journal de Québec – in fact, the latter had an identical two-page spread, only in black and white).

Then again, Coudé-Lord’s story has plenty of adjectives that the Agence QMI story was lacking, and her impression was so diametrically opposed to everyone else’s (including mine) that I can only conclude that she was in a different universe at the time or has become disconnected from reality:

La Série Montréal/Québec sera rassembleuse comme le fut Star Académie. On n’abandonne pas une recette gagnante. Attendez-vous à ce que le Québec se divise en deux au cours des prochaines semaines. Les joueurs sont attachants

Guy Lafleur a résumé fort bien ce qu’allait être cette série : «le hockey est un jeu qui nous rend heureux».

La présentation des joueurs a donné le ton. L’émotion sera au rendez-vous. Stéphane Laporte et Julie Snyder, le concepteur et la productrice de cette série, savent faire de la télévision pour et par le monde. Et encore hier soir ils en ont fourni la preuve.

Le portrait de chaque joueur nous le rendait fort sympathique. … C’était même touchant de voir les parents applaudir dans les estrades …

Loco Locass a interprété avec enthousiasme l’hymne national de Québec …

Montréal commence fort avec une gardienne de but … Ça promet.

Belle initiative de Guy Carbonneau …

Éric Lapointe a donné du chien à l’équipe de Carbo avec une interprétation enlevante de l’hymne national de Montréal.

Une belle réalisation de Michel Quidoz … Marie-Claude Savard, l’animatrice, fut solide et a su laisser place à l’évènement. …

That’s 16 separate praises by my count, and not a single criticism of the show. I would have reprinted the entire article here if I could do so without fear of a copyright infringement lawsuit. It’s surreal.

If I ever get married, I’m having Michelle Coudé-Lord write my vows. By then she’ll probably be a public relations specialist.

PR is about the only way I can explain both Journals taking two colour pages to present players from both teams.

Hell, it makes Jeff Lee (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Quebecor-owned Videotron) look tame in his video blowjob.

Despite what some conspiracy theorists might think, Quebecor-owned media were not unanimous in their praise. Roxanne Tremblay of 7 jours didn’t hold back on criticisms, and followed it up with a second-day story about the show’s problems.

But still, even though I’m skeptical of theories about media owners directly affecting editorial content on a day-to-day basis, I can’t help wonder if Coudé-Lord’s article is what Pierre-Karl Péladeau envisions for his newsroom of the future – one where unionized journalists don’t stand in the way of Quebecor’s self-interest with their silly journalistic ethics.

Launch parties-o-rama (UPDATED)

Not having been invited the time to attend all the fall launch parties being put on by the radio and TV people over the last little while, I’m pleased to see that most of them are briefly summarized in video form.

The two big ones were rebranding efforts: NRJ radio, which is what Énergie has turned itself into, and V, which is the new TQS.

But there were also launches for CKOI, Rock Détente, Rythme FM, Musique Plus, Radio-Canada, Télé-Québec, TVA, VRAK.tv and Télétoon, and fortunately the people at WebPresse believe these parties are news.

So here are the launch parties in YouTube format from various sources:

Continue reading

CRTC Roundup: Hands off our InterTubes

The big news is the CRTC’s decision to extend its hands-off policy regarding regulation of content on the Internet. The decision, which is explained in some detail point-by-point, was praised by Internet providers and condemned by actors and writers unions (PDF), both for entirely self-serving financial reasons.

One thing the commission did decide to implement was a provision regulating “undue preference”, which is when a media company uses its power in one industry to help affiliated companies in another. For example, if Rogers were to arrange for Rogers Cable to carry Rogers SportsNet but dump TSN, or if Videotron were to give sweet deals to TVA and LCN, that would be considered undue preference.

The CRTC is looking for rules that would extend this to the new media environment, citing the walled gardens of wireless carriers as Exhibit A that the industry isn’t very good at self-regulating.

Michael Geist has more analysis.

Martial law: Weather Network in control

The CRTC has agreed to a scheme whereby Pelmorex, the company that owns the Weather Network and MétéoMédia, would become national emergency alert aggregators, providing emergency broadcast information to local broadcasters. This scratches an itch pointed out by Public Safety Canada, and satisfies the CRTC’s wish for an industry-based solution.

But, of course, there’s a catch. In exchange for providing this service, the CRTC agrees to require all digital cable and direct-to-home satellite providers to require mandatory carriage of the Weather Network and MétéoMédia for all subscribers, who will get charged the $0.23 per subscriber per month fee. Currently, the networks profit from mandatory carriage only on basic analog cable.

As more Canadians move to digital forms of television delivery, Pelmorex has been anxious to get the CRTC to force its channels (and fee) on subscribers. This is its second attempt at securing such an order. The first didn’t have the emergency alert component but did propose a modest decrease in per-subscriber fee in exchange. In both cases, Pelmorex talks of the danger to its business model if television subscribers are given the option to choose not to carry the networks.

The decision (which features some absurdities like nothing that the stations have “100% Canadian content” and make “a significant contribution to the development of Canadian expresson”) was not unanimous. Commissioner Len Katz was highly critical that a company that has a profit margin of about 25% could be in such serious danger.

The mandate is effective Sept. 1, 2010 and expires on Aug. 31, 2015, by which point Pelmorex will need to come to the CRTC to seek another order.

Welcome Current.tv Canada

The CRTC has approved an application from a company mostly owned by a company owned by the CBC to create a Canadian version of Al Gore’s Current TV. Like its U.S. counterpart, the network would broadcast short-form user-generated content.

The CRTC took issue with the fact that Current TV has a 20% interest, and forced the CBC-controlled company to make amendments to ensure the U.S. interest couldn’t assert any control over day-to-day operations.

The channel is a Category 2 digital specialty channel, which is what most new specialty channels are. That means it’s discretionary and won’t be on analog cable.

APTN wants Olympics exceptions

The Aboriginal Peoples’ Television Network, which is part of the mega consortium of private broadcasters that will show the Olympics in Vancouver next winter, has asked the CRTC for some leeway on its obligations for the two-week event. Specifically, it wants to be relieved of its French-language, aboriginal-language and “priority programming” (i.e. drama) requirements for those two weeks.

The latter makes sense if they’re devoting those weeks to sports. Clearly they will be Canadian productions. But the language requests don’t make much sense, especially because CTV has argued that APTN would help in bringing French-language Olympics coverage to francophones outside Quebec.

TVA Sports, TVA Junior

Quebecor is looking to expand its cable channels with new uncreatively-named networks for sports and youth programming. The former would take advantage of recent loosening of policy restricting competition in sports networks, as well as provide an eventual outlet should Quebecor’s bid for the Canadiens be successful.

One pipe, one policy?

CRTC chairman Konrad von Finkenstein did some public thinking, wondering if a single policy encompassing both broadcasting and telecommunications isn’t the future of the commission. Of course, he says, that’s up to Parliament to decide.

Take your time

The following approved specialty channels have been given extensions to launch them:

Most of these channels were approved around 2006 and still haven’t launched yet. After a couple of extensions the CRTC forces you to start over from scratch. Expect most of these channels to expire before they ever see the light of day.

TVA renews Vlog for third season

Dominic Arpin

If Dominic Arpin looks happy here, it’s because I’ve taken a file photo and used it out of context as filler art to tell you that TVA has renewed his weekly web video clips show Vlog for a third season, days after it aired its second season finale. Arpin says he’s got a deal for 10 episodes so far, not including the four special-topic episodes that will air over the next few weeks.

Vlog premiered in 2007 as a half-hour show with Arpin and Geneviève Borne that screened 30-second clips from popular videos online. It took me a while to warm up to it, especially because it seemed to leech off other people’s creative content without offering much in return (the show still isn’t downloadable or streamable after it airs). Its erratic schedule following Occupation Double (and against RadCan’s powerhouse Tout le monde en parle) didn’t help its ratings, which eventually led to its cancellation.

But Arpin refused to give in. He launched his own website and began work on an online video guide, and eight months after it was cancelled, TVA brought Vlog back to life in a retooled form. Gone were his co-host and the all-white sets and giant flat-screen TVs. Instead, he’d introduce the videos webcam-style from his fake apartment. The show was also moved to Thursday nights (and eventually Friday nights) at a fixed time.

Apparently that was enough. Vlog is here to stay, and Arpin doesn’t have to worry about going back to reporting.

Bernard who?

Luc Lavigne photo (with some improvements)

Luc Lavigne photo (with some improvements)

Back when Bill Haugland, a fixture of CFCF’s newscast for almost a half-century and the long-time anchor of Pulse News, retired from the anchor’s chair two years ago, CTV’s Montreal station made a big deal about his departure. There was even a half-hour special about it, which is saying quite a bit in an era where locally-produced English-language television is extremely rare.

One of the things that special included was some classy sendoffs from anchors of competing newscasts. Not only did Global’s Jamie Orchard (who worked at CTV before joining Global) and CBC’s Dennis Trudeau (for a long time his direct competitor) give heartfelt goodbyes, but there were messages from the anchors of TVA and Radio-Canada’s newscasts, the latter from Bernard Derome.

So when Derome, who has been in RadCan’s anchor chair since (insert lame joke here), retired himself last week (albeit for the second time), the anglos returned the favour. CTV’s newscast had an item on Derome’s departure, and The Gazette had a feature piece and an editorial on it (despite what some in the francophone media may think, my paper doesn’t completely ignore what goes on in the other solitude).

It wasn’t the kind of Deromania that’s been flooding RadCan and La Presse recently (note to self: retire in late December when there’s no other news going on so I get more ink), but there was an acknowledgment that one of Quebec’s biggest vedettes was ending a storied career.

As for TVA, RadCan’s biggest (and with the departure of TQS’s news division, only) news competitor … absolutely nothing, according to Le Soleil’s Richard Therrien. A big “fuck you” without saing a word.

It’s sad what the drive for competition can do to strip some people of any sense of class.

It’s something where, frankly, je souhaite que la tendence ne se maintient pas.

Conseil de presse outs TVA for journalistic plagiarism

The Conseil de presse du Québec has denied an appeal of a decision which blames TVA for stealing a story from the biweekly Courrier Laval that studied the condition of water around Montreal.

The story made the Courrier Laval, which then ended up in La Presse, and was picked up by Patrick Lagacé, which is how I found it.

The TVA report repeated the conclusions of the investigation without attributing the source, which royally pissed off the journalist who spent months working on the story. Their argument was that the information from the newspaper was in the “public domain” and that no copyright could be attached to an idea.

Of course, the argument isn’t over copyright, it’s over journalistic integrity. Journalists can’t simply repeat what they’ve heard without saying where they heard it from. Without proper attribution, errors and misinformation can spread quickly. And no journalist should simply trust what another says is correct.

As Lagacé points out, though, this kind of thing happens all the time, especially with morning radio just reading the news out of the newspaper. The evening TV news is less underhanded about it. They’ll spend a day re-interviewing the same people and producing a story of their own, but it’s just as annoying when they won’t say where the idea came from and who reported it first.

Newspapers themselves aren’t completely without fault here either. They’ll re-report stories they found with the competition or what they saw on TV news the night before, sometimes using purposely vague attribution like “a Montreal newspaper” or “reports said.” But it’s not nearly as bad as what you see in broadcasting.

TVA’s transgression was particularly bad, but let’s hope this decision acts as a wakeup call for those journalists who think they can cut corners by re-reporting stories and are too shameless to give credit where it’s due.

CRTC roundup: new rules for converging newsrooms

The CRTC has given final approval for the “Journalistic Independence Code” proposed by the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council, a self-regulation body of Canada’s private broadcasters.

The code is designed to replace CRTC rules about the independence of TV and newspaper newsrooms, which affect Canada’s three largest private TV broadcasters:

  • Global TV (owned by Canwest which also owns a newspaper chain including the National Post and The Gazette – which includes me)
  • CTV (owned by CTVglobemedia which also owns the Globe and Mail)
  • TVA (owned by Quebecor Media which also owns the Sun chain, 24 Hours/Heures and the Journal de Montréal)

Currently, the CRTC has rules that the television newsrooms and the newsrooms of affiliated newspapers cannot be mixed or merged. They must be completely independent of one another.

As if to underscore how bureaucratic everything is at the CRTC and CBSC, only three of the ten points in the code actually deal with rules for broadcasters. The rest deal with how the code itself should be administered.

The new rules are:

  • There must be completely independent “news management and presentation structures”
  • Decisions about journalistic content must be made “solely by that broadcaster”
  • TV news managers may not sit on newspaper editorial boards and vice versa (but news managers may “sit on committees or bodies intended to co-ordinate the use of newsgathering resources”)

The CRTC’s rules on cross-media ownership date back to 2001, when Quebecor Media bought Videotron, which then owned TVA. The transaction meant that Quebecor would own the largest private television network in Quebec, the largest newspaper (the Journal de Montréal) and the largest cable TV company. The CRTC decided that some journalistic rules would need to be in place to protect the diversity of voices in the newsroom.

Those rules were just as vague as the new ones proposed. Newsrooms and news management decisions must be separate.

Though they sound simple, the application of those rules is all about interpretation. For example, while newspapers and TV stations can’t decide on the other’s coverage, nothing prevents the parent company of both from dictating news. In fact, under the new rules, nothing discourages TV stations and newspapers from “co-ordinating newsgathering resources.” This could mean, for example, having TV journalists file both TV packages and newspaper articles on stories that have video, and having newspaper journalists file texts to both newspaper and TV on stories that don’t.

Journalist unions, who also protested the original Quebecor takeover, also spoke out during hearings about this code, saying it didn’t do enough to really separate newsrooms. But it seems the CRTC thinks it’s enough for them, and with the new code approved it is allowing networks to modify their licenses to remove the original rules (TVA was first off the bat)

We’ll see over the coming years how many loopholes can be found to cut down costs and introduce “efficiencies” by reducing “duplication” in the two media.

UPDATE (Nov. 25): TVA’s union has objected to the request to use the new rules, saying it threatens journalistic independence.

In other news

Oh, and Pauline Marois is flapping her gums again about creating a Quebec CRTC, further needlessly duplicating government institutions and burning through our tax dollars.

En primeur: TVA to resurrect Vlog

Those of you who follow Dominic Arpin via Facebook already know this, but for the benefit of the less-connected: TVA is bringing back Vlog, its weekly roundup of hot web videos, more than nine months after it aired its last episode, supposedly for good

Vlog was cancelled due to disappointing ratings, though it got screwed by the network and was never really given a chance over its handful of episodes. Not only was it slotted against Tout le monde en parle, but it followed Occupation double, which would almost always run long and push the show back. That wouldn’t have been a problem if the audiences for the two shows were the same, but they weren’t, and people tuning in at 9:30 to watch a show about Internet videos instead saw some stupid reality show about sexy people living together, with no clue when their show would come on.

When it was cancelled, there was talk about an online-only version coming earlier this year to Quebecor’s new Canoe.tv website. But for reasons that Arpin promises to explain on his blog by next week when the fall schedule comes out, the network decided to try again to put it back on the air.

Arpin says they’re working on a new format (perhaps going into more depth about featured videos, to deal with some criticism that they’re exploiting them almost to the level of copyright infringement). Details will come about the new format, but the main difference is that Arpin is going solo. Former cohost Geneviève Borne already has a new gig at Belle et Bum on Télé-Québec.

Vlog Season 2 premieres Thursday, Sept. 28 at 9:30 p.m. on TVA.

I hate it already.

UPDATE: Arpin gives some details in a video on his blog. He mentions something about the format being more like a YouTube video blog, with him looking into a camera.