The Weekly Briefing

RADIO/AUDIO/PODCAST:

Howard Glassman & Fred Patterson

Humble & Fred returned to the terrestrial morning show airwaves on Monday. For the past eight years, the infamous Toronto morning show duo have been successfully producing a podcast version of their show which is now being aired on Funny 820 (CHAM-AM) Hamilton, the Bell Media-owned comedy station. While they’ll broadcast live between 7 and 9 a.m., the show will stay true to the Humble & Fred podcast format. Read Broadcast Dialogue’s interview with Fred Patterson here.

Serena Ryder

Serena Ryder is joining the 98.1 CHFI Toronto on-air team with a new Sunday afternoon show, set to debut Sept. 23. Airing from noon to 2 p.m., The Serena Ryder Show will feature a selection of music chosen by the Juno Award-winning musician, in addition to “authentic conversation with Serena and tales from her tour bus,” according to a news release. Broadcast live from Toronto, the show will be syndicated across Rogers’ Adult Contemporary stations in 13 markets, including 96.7 CHYM Kitchener; KiSS 100.5 (CHUR-FM) North Bay; KiSS 100.5 (CHAS-FM) Sault Saint Marie; KiSS 105.3 (CJMX-FM) Sudbury; KiSS 99.3 (CKGB-FM) Timmins; KiSS 102.3 (CKY-FM) Winnipeg; 95.9 CHFM Calgary; Mountain FM (CHMN-FM) Canmore; KiSS 107.7 (CFRV-FM) Lethbridge; STAR 98.3 (CKSR-FM) Chilliwack; Ocean 98.5 (CIOC-FM) Victoria; and Mountain FM (CISQ-FM) Whistler. Read more here.

Arlene Dickinson and Jann Arden

The Business of Life, an hour-long podcast from Canadian singer-songwriter Jann Arden and entrepreneur Arlene Dickinson of Dragons’ Den fame, debuted over the weekend. The Business of Life is billed as a weekly business and lifestyle podcast with no topic off limits for the longtime friends. It’s also airing on iHeartRadio stations in some markets, including Newstalk1010 (CFRB-AM) Toronto, CJAD 800 AM Montreal, BNN Bloomberg Radio 1410 (CFTE-AM) Vancouver, 580 CFRA Ottawa, AM 800 (CKLW-AM) Windsor, NewsTalk 1290 (CJBK-AM) London, Newstalk 610 CKTB St. Catharines, AM 1150 (CKFR-AM) Kelowna, and CFAX 1070 Victoria. Read more here.

BNN Bloomberg launched editorial series Cannabis Canada Sept. 14, which will run through the official legalization date of Wednesday, Oct. 17. The in-depth series delves into hot-button issues facing the pot industry and its investors from sky-high stock values to regulation. The series will be accompanied by a free e-newsletter beginning Monday, Oct. 1, offering a daily rundown of original reports, video interviews, breaking news and stock prices, as well as a daily marijuana business radio report available on BNN Bloomberg 1410 (CFTE-AM) Vancouver and other iHeartRadio Canada talk stations.

Niki Reitmayer

Corus is continuing the trend of podcast to broadcast, announcing that its Curiouscast podcast network is partnering with Halifax-based mystery/true crime podcast Nighttime, which will begin airing across the Global News Talk Radio network, starting in October. Additionally, in-house podcast This is Why, hosted by Corus Vancouver producer and contributor Niki Reitmayer will also become a national radio show. Read the full story here.

Ken Williams

Media Indigena, a weekly Indigenous current events podcast that explores topics from pipelines to the Colten Boushie case, will hold its first-ever live taping at the University of Alberta this Friday. One of the podcast’s hosts is Ken Williams, a former APTN journalist and Cree playwright in the U of A drama department. The show is ordinarily recorded over the phone with host Rick Harp in Winnipeg, along with roundtable guests who call in from across the country. Friday’s live taping will happen at 7 p.m. in the university’s Fine Arts Building.

Lasia Kretzel

News 1130 (CKWX-AM) Vancouver reporter Lasia Kretzl is donating 55″ of hair to raise funds for mental health. Kretzl, who hasn’t cut her lengthy brunette locks in eight years, has started a six-week long campaign to raise funds for Coast Mental Health in memory of her mother Mary who struggled with alcoholism. Read more here.

Accountemps says an online survey of 800 workers shows most Canadians like listening to music at work and are more productive when they do. Seventy-seven per cent of survey respondents said they enjoy turning on the tunes at work, with those 18 to 34 most inclined to listen to music at work (87 per cent), followed by those 35-54 years of age (73 per cent) and employees 55 and older (57 per cent).

SIGN-OFFS:

Bill Gable

Bill Gable, 69, suddenly on Sept. 18, of complications from chronic pulmonary obstructive disorder (COPD). Gable was best known as “Brother Bill” during his early years in broadcasting at CKLW-AM Windsor. Gable worked at some of the biggest stations on both sides of the border including KHJ Los Angeles, CFTR and CHFI Toronto, WLW Cincinnati and WOCL and WMMO Orlando, among others. He spent the final six years of a 46-year broadcasting career at Zoomer Radio (CFZM-AM) Toronto as host of The Happy Gang morning show, and retired in 2014. Listen to a 1974 “Brother Bill” CKLW aircheck here.

Maurice Boucher

Maurice Boucher, 52, on Sept. 12. Boucher was the Canada Media Fund’s director of marketing and communications, starting in Jan. 2012. Boucher was instrumental in developing strategies to elevate the profile of Canadian content and promote CMF programs and initiatives. He was very proud of the development of Eye on Canada, celebrating Canadian audiovisual content, and the success of the Encore+ YouTube channel. Prior to CMF, Boucher was chief of public and media relations for Télé-Québec, in addition to a variety of other marketing and communications roles. He held various senior positions in some of Montreal’s most prestigious organizations, including the Canadian Centre for Architecture and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts. He was also the first general manager of Destination centre-ville, the downtown Montreal commercial development association. Boucher was the recipient of the Canadian Public Relations Society Award of Excellence.

Peter Donat

Peter Donat, 90, on Sept. 10 of complications from diabetes. Born in Kentville, NS, Donat emigrated to the U.S. in 1950 to study drama at Yale University, following in the footsteps of his uncle, British film and stage actor Robert Donat (The 39 Steps, Goodbye Mr. Chips). In 1961, Donat was featured in The Canvas Barricade, the first Canadian play to be performed at the Stratford Festival. His first television role came in 1965 when he was cast on Moment of Truth, a Canadian serial also broadcast in the U.S. He went on to guest star on shows like Mission: Impossible, Banacek, Mannix, Hawaii Five-O, Charlie’s Angels, Lou Grant, Hart to Hart, Hill Street Blues, Simon & Simon and Murder, She Wrote, among others. Donat also had a recurring role on The X-Files as Agent Mulder’s adoptive father. His film credits include The China Syndrome (1979), The War of the Roses (1989), Skin Deep (1989) and The Game (1997). Donat’s brother Richard is also an actor known for his roles on the TV series Haven and Emily of New Moon.

TV/FILM/VIDEO:

Sophie Dupuis

Sophie Dupuis’s Chien de garde will represent Canada in the race for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. A filmmaker from Val-d’Or, Québec, Chien de garde is Dupuis’ first feature film. The drama stars Jean-Simon Leduc, Théodore Pellerin, Claudel Laberge, Maude Guérin, and Paul Ahmarani. Since its theatrical release, it’s been screened in competition at some 20 international film festivals and picked up three Iris Prizes at the most recent Gala Québec Cinéma for best lead actress, best new actor, and best editing.

Bell Media’s French-language production partners took home 11 awards at the 33rd Gémeaux Awards Gala. Canal D claimed six awards for Expo 67, Mission Impossible, Claude N’est Pas Mort and Fugitifs. VRAK followed with two awards for Le Chalet and Med, and Canal Vie received an award for Maigrir Pour Gagner: Le Defi Du Quebec. RDS won a statuette for 25 ans D’Émotions and Super Écran for Marche À L’Ombre. Find the full list of winners here.

Bell Media says Emmy Awards viewership in Canada bucked U.S. trends with Monday night’s broadcast drawing its highest ratings since 2014. Citing Numeris data, the network said 1.8 million people tuned into the show on CTV, with viewership up 10 per cent over last year. In the U.S., the awards show drew a record-low audience of just under 10.2 million people, down from 11.4 million the past two years.

W5 returns for a 53rd season this Saturday, Sept. 22 at 7 p.m. ET on CTV, the CTV GO app, and CTVNews.ca. In the premiere episode, W5 host and managing editor Kevin Newman delivers “Hot Wheels” – an investigative look at new and shocking car theft techniques. W5 also looks into the specialized fraud schemes that result in stolen vehicles being shipped in containers overseas from Canadian ports. Also this week, W5 correspondent Avery Haines reveals the disturbing backstory to the 2012 police investigations into three disappearances from Toronto’s Gay Village that eventually led to the arrest of alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur.

Amanda Herrera

Gusto Worldwide Media’s newest original series Fresh Market Dinners premiered Tuesday. The 10-episode, half hour series follows host Amanda Herrera as she scours regional farmer’s markets for local produce and artisanal products.Travelling to each market in her retro teardrop trailer, Herrera creates wholesome dishes in her outdoor kitchen using the fresh ingredients she’s sourced. Each episode features a different farmer’s market experience, against the backdrop of various Ontario towns.

Discovery’s original Canadian series Mighty Trains returns with an all-new season, airing Sundays at 7 p.m. ET / 4 p.m. PT, beginning Oct. 14. Each one-hour episode tells the stories of six exceptional trains and their scenic locomotive routes through Canada, Ecuador, India, New Zealand, Sweden, and Spain. Produced by Discovery Canada’s in-house production company, Exploration Production Inc. (EPI), Mighty Trains is set to air in more than 100 countries around the world, spanning the U.K., Germany, Australia, France, Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, and throughout Asia. Discovery has confirmed production is already underway Season 3.

Nelvana and Sony Pictures Animation have announced the second-season renewal of hit animated comedy Hotel Transylvania: The Series. Disney Channel in the U.S. and their global territories, and Corus-owned TELETOON Canada are set to broadcast the new episodes. The series’ first season premiered on Netflix in the U.S. in June and will continue to roll out globally this fall.

Nelvana has greenlit three new productions including digital-first, live-action series Miss Persona, and two new animated series, P.U.R.S.T Agent Binky and The Remarkable Mr. King, based off the popular Corus-owned Kids Can Press titles. Nelvana, which holds global distribution and merchandising rights to all three properties, will introduce the series to the international market at global TV market MIPCOM in October. Miss Persona (52 x 3 minutes) will launch on the Corus-owned Treehouse Direct YouTube channel on Sept. 21, before debuting on Treehouse’s linear channel in Jan. 2019. New CGI-animated series P.U.R.S.T Agent Binky (52 x 11 minutes), for kids four to seven, will air in Fall 2019 on Treehouse in Canada, while The Remarkable Mr. King (39 x 7 minutes), aimed at kids two to five, will air in Fall 2019 on Treehouse.

Bell Media’s Harold Greenberg Fund says it closed its fiscal year (ending Aug. 31) with support for 94 Canadian film projects through the fund’s Script Development Program, representing an investment of more than $1 million. A full list of projects supported in 2017/18 can be found here.

Saban Capital Acquisition Corp. has entered into a merger acquisition agreement with Toronto-based Sim Video International, a leading provider of production and post-production solutions, and Panavision. The merger will see the creation of a global provider of end-to-end production and post-production services to the entertainment industry. Under terms of the business combination agreement, Panavision and Sim will become wholly-owned subsidiaries of Saban Capital which will change its name to Panavision Holdings Inc. and continue to trade on the Nasdaq stock exchange. The transaction reflects a valuation for the combined entity of $622 million (inclusive of debt). Upon closure of the merger, anticipated in the first quarter of 2019, Kim Snyder, president and CEO of Panavision, will serve as the new company’s chairman and CEO. Bill Roberts, CFO of Panavision, will serve in the same role for the combined company.

ONLINE/DIGITAL:

The Canadian Online Publishing Award finalists have been announced, recognizing excellence in online content. CTV Calgary and RDS.ca are in the running for Best News Coverage in the Media category, while Maclean’s and The Narwhal are competing for Best News Website. This year’s 10th Anniversary COPA Party on Nov. 14 will be a red carpet affair at the historic Eglinton Grand in Toronto, preceded by The State of Digital seminar exploring the ad sales side of online publishing in the shadow of digital titans Google and Facebook.

Saara Chaudry

CBC News is doubling down on boosting its youth-focused content with the launch of two new digital-first news platforms for kids and young adults – CBC Kids News and CBC News Snapchat Discover. Targeted to kids aged 9 – 13, CBC Kids News covers local, national and international stories deemed relevant to Canadian kids by what CBC describes as a “seasoned team of journalists who will consult with an editorial board of young Canadians from across the country.” The platform will include stories from Canadian contributors aged 9-16, including 14-year-old Toronto-based actress Saara Chaudry who has been chosen as host and lead contributor from more than 700 applicants. Chaudry, who won an ACTRA Award for Best Voice Performance for her role in animated film The Breadwinner, landed the her new role based on her keen interest in world issues. CBC News is also publishing a youth-focused, highly visual, daily edition on the Snapchat Discover platform, making the public broadcaster the first Canadian publisher of daily news on the app. Read more here.

The BBC will host the first non-U.S. news show on Facebook Watch. Cut Through the Noise will air weekly and report on issues from Washington, DC and elsewhere. Facebook Watch launched its news programming with On Location from ABC News, CNN’s Anderson Cooper Full Circle, along with Univision’s Real America with Jorge Ramos. According to a study by The Diffusion Group, approximately half of Facebook uses have never heard of Facebook Watch, which reportedly has 50 million viewers a month.

Facebook is expanding its fact-checking to include photo and video posts ahead of the U.S. midterm elections. The digital giant says it’s developed machine learning tools that help identify false content, which will be provided to third-party fact-checking partners in 17 countries. In a blog post, product manager Antonia Woodford explains that as ratings from fact-checkers are accumulated, the platform will be able to improve the accuracy of the machine learning model. They’ll also leverage tech like optical character recognition (OCR) to extract text from photos and compare that text to headlines from fact-checkers’ articles, as well as detect if a photo or video has been manipulated.

The Globe and Mail has launched Report on Business Cannabis Professional, a premium subscription online news service for global cannabis insiders and investors. Available weekday mornings, the newsletter will include original reporting on the cannabis industry including policy decisions, people moves, corporate finance, and business strategy and operations. In addition, subscribers will be the first to receive alerts with breaking cannabis industry news from The Globe’s newsroom and bureaus.

The Insight Centre for Data Analytics in Ireland has researched what influences the kind of apps people use, finding that the country a person lives in is the single most determining factor. Researchers studied the data of 25,323 Android users who used 54,776 mobile applications in 44 countries. English-speaking countries, including the Canada, the U.S., UK, Australia, and New Zealand, along with Japan and South Korea had the highest app usage, while Argentina, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Pakistan and India had lower general usage, but higher use of apps geared towards sports and racing games. Socio-economic factors were the second biggest influencer with occupation, education, and how much a person has in savings, the next determinant in what apps a person will use, trumping both age and gender.

GENERAL:

The Supreme Court of Canada (SCOC) has sided with Rogers in its case against Voltage Pictures LLC, finding that companies pursuing copyright violators should have to reimburse internet service providers for their efforts to find and disclose subscriber information. Voltage was attempting to sue violating subscribers in a “reverse” class action copyright lawsuit and had identified the IP addresses of thousands of users of file sharing software they suspected of downloading its movies, which include titles like The Hurt Locker and Dallas Buyers Club. Rogers claimed each undertaking would take 20 to 30 minutes at a cost of $100 per hour resulting in a charge back to Voltage of $2.75 million. The initial 2016 Federal Court ruling in the case decided that Rogers did have the right to charge Voltage for their work; which was overturned on appeal in 2017. The SCOC has now sent the issue back to the lower court to determine what a reasonable cost is for the ISP to execute a so-called Norwich court order.

CBC/Radio-Canada says the focus of this year’s annual public meeting will be the importance of diversity and inclusion in the collective cultural experience. Set to take place in Edmonton at the Art Gallery of Alberta on Sept. 25, details of the public broadcaster’s new 2018-2021 Diversity and Inclusion Plan will also be shared. For those unable to attend, the event will be broadcast live on Facebook with a webcast set to stream at www.cbc.radio-canada.ca/apm beginning at 11:30 a.m. (MDT) / 1:30 p.m. (EST). Read more here.

Quebecor Inc. is beta testing its own low-cost wireless mobile flanker brand. Fizz is being tested across Videotron’s LTE network in Quebec and the Ottawa area. A launch date hasn’t been revealed for the no-frills brand which promises speeds of up to 150 Mbps, depending on phone and location.

The Ontario Association of Broadcasters (OAB) Connection 2018 conference agenda is out with radio futurologist James Cridland providing the opening keynote on radio’s long term survival. Other highlights include The Future of Content Panel with moderator Alan Cross and afternoon keynote speaker Valerie Geller on how to become a better communicator and increase audience. Early bird registration for the Nov. 8 event is now open.

The Canadian Media Guild (CMG) Freelance Branch and four other Canadian freelance associations have banded together. CMG, the Professional Writers Association of Canada (PWAC), News Photographers Association of Canada (NPAC), Travel Media Association of Canada (TMAC), and the Urban Worker Project (UWP) are collectively urging their members to work together to challenge stagnating pay rates, and contracts that demand copyright and ask freelance journalists to indemnify hiring publishers should they be sued because of content the freelancer has contributed. Don Genova, president of CMG Freelance, says more and more Canadians are self-employed, or engaged on short-term contracts that offer no job security and no benefits. This weekend in Toronto (Sept. 21 and 22), as part of the Say No to Bad Contracts campaign, PWAC and CMG Freelance will present a conference called Level Up, offering professional development sessions, including understanding and negotiating contracts.

SUPPLY LINES:

PromoSuite and SoCast have announced a new integration that improves the speed and accuracy of website and app updates for on-air contesting, contest rules, storm closure information, and event listings. The integration instantly and automatically updates radio station websites and apps within SoCast’s digital platform when information is entered into PromoSuite Next – PromoSuite’s cloud-based promotions management system. The new integration is live now on SoCast’s platform and free for any radio stations using both PromoSuite Next and SoCast.

Google is bringing its Grow with Google digital skills training programs to Canada. The digital giant is partnering with Canada Learning Code to provide Canadians with access to the Applied Digital Skills Program, a blended online and in-person curriculum that teaches digital skills through practical problem solving so learners can be competitive in an evolving job market. The Professional IT Support Certification Program is aimed at beginner learners and features over 64 hours of video lessons, hands-on labs and interactive assessments for adults looking to reskill and start a new career in technology. Google is also bringing workshops, in-person training, and one-on-one sessions to communities across Canada, in partnership with local community groups, businesses and leaders. Grow with Google events are scheduled across the country, starting this month.


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