CBC Music has returned holiday classic “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” to its playlists after overwhelming audience demand. CBC Music was among the Canadian platforms and networks that revealed last week they would stop scheduling the tune, following opinionated debate about whether the song’s lyrics are too predatory in the #MeToo era. An editorial note posted to CBC Music Dec. 11, said the song will be restored to the two playlists it was pulled from following overwhelming audience feedback. “Because we value our audience input which was overwhelmingly to include the song, we have put it back on the two playlists where it had been removed,” CBC public affairs head Chuck Thompson said in a statement. “Appreciating not everyone interprets lyrics the same way, listeners may wish to skip the song as we understand not everyone will agree with this decision.”
Numeris has confirmed there’ll be no Spring 2019 measurement in 10 markets following survey challenges earlier this year due to low sample returns. They include Saint John, NB; Kingston, Windsor, Regina, Saskatoon, Red Deer, Lethbridge, Kamloops, Kelowna and Prince George. Ross Davies, Director, Member Engagement, tells Broadcast Dialogue they are continuing to work on a long term solution. For the time being, those markets will move to one survey per year.
The CRTC has returned two applications for new commercial radio stations in Quebec City, saying the market cannot sustain an additional radio station at this time. The commision will, however, proceed with applications for a new radio station in Portneuf, as well as an Sainte-Marie-de-Beauce.
The CRTC has approved an application by the CBC to operate a transmitter in Digby to rebroadcast CBC Radio One. The new transmitter will operate at 107.1 MHz (channel 296A) with an effective radiated power of 420 watts. It will be co-located with CBAF-FM-7 Digby (ICI Radio-Canada Première) to optimize operating costs.
Peter Maher, the radio voice of the Calgary Flames for 33 years, has a new book out: If These Walls Could Talk — Stories from the Calgary Flames’ Ice, Locker Room and Press Box. The memoir was co-written with longtime Calgary Herald sports columnist George Johnson. Maher called games for the team from 1980 until his retirement following the 2013-14 NHL season.
Dean Blundell has made an uncharacteristic move, announcing he’s doing away with the ‘Babes’ section on deanbundell.com. The former 102.1 The Edge (CFNY-FM) and Sportsnet 590 The Fan (CJCL-AM) Toronto shock jock writes that the section, which featured posts of attractive and often scantily clad women, “cheapens the site and doesn’t fit with the brand anymore.” Blundell says he’ll be launching a new blog and app in January and “can’t justify making money on objectifying women.”
Forbes’ list of the highest-paid radio hosts of 2018 is relatively unchanged from last year with Howard Stern continuing his reign as the “King of All Media,” earning an estimated $90 million before taxes and fees. Rush Limbaugh came in a close second, earning $84.5 million, with iHeartMedia host Ryan Seacrest rounding out the top three. Seacrest’s earnings jumped significantly from $58 million in 2017 to $74 million this year, due to the return of American Idol. Fox News star Sean Hannity placed fourth, earning $36 million. Hannity pushed Glenn Beck to fifth place, whose earnings slid to $8.5 million, due to struggles within his conservative media company TheBlaze.
The Jim Pattison Broadcast Group stations in Prince Albert, 900 CKBI, XFM (CHQX-FM) and Power 99 (CFMM-FM), helped raise $1,003,296 in pledges and donations during the 13th annual Give A Little Life Day Radiothon for the Victoria Hospital Foundation’s campaign for a new, improved neonatal unit. The Dec. 6 event saw the stations broadcast 12 hours non-stop for the cause.
The CKNW Kids’ Fund raised more than $1.4 million for children with special needs during its annual Pledge Day Radiothon on Dec. 3. The station broadcast throughout the day from the rooftop room at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, sharing stories from those who have benefited from the fund. This was the 41st edition of Pledge Day, which began as a small in-studio program in 1977.
CBC Podcasts are now available to Spotify users under the podcast hub and browse section. More information on the launch date for Radio-Canada podcasts will be shared in the New Year. CBC/Radio-Canada is currently the #1 podcaster in Canada, reaching more Canadians than any other podcast publisher. According to SumoLogic, CBC Podcasts are downloaded 16 million times per month.
Curiouscast, Corus Entertainment’s podcast network, has added a sleep podcast to its offerings. Nothing Much Happens; Bedtime Stories for Grown-Ups is hosted by meditation specialist Kathryn Nicolai. Each episode features Nicolai reading an original story to calm busy minds, using the “bibliotherapy” method. Since the show launched in April, Nothing Much Happens has already seen nearly 2.5 million downloads, with 500,000 downloads per month on Spotify alone.
NPR has launched its new podcast analytics technology Remote Audio Data (RAD), a method for sharing listening metrics from podcast applications straight back to publishers. RAD works using tags that podcasters mark within their audio files at certain points and indicate an analytics URL. A mobile app is configured to read the RAD tags and when listeners hit those locations in the file, it bundles and sends anonymized information to that URL. The publisher can then use that data, from all devices, to get holistic listening stats. NPR worked with a cross-section of nearly 30 companies to develop and test the new, parallel metric. Among those committed to implementing RAD in 2019 are Acast, AdsWizz, ART19, Awesound, Blubrry Podcasting, Panoply, Omny Studio, Podtrac, PRI/PRX, RadioPublic, Triton Digital, WideOrbit, and Whooshkaa. Development was also supported by Cadence13, Edison Research, ESPN, Google, iHeartMedia, Libsyn, The New York Times, New York Public Radio, Voxnest, and Wondery.
The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) has announced that broadcast veteran Duff Roman will be awarded the 2019 Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award for his ongoing contributions to the Canadian music industry. On this episode of Broadcast Dialogue – the Podcast, we cover everything from Roman’s meteoric rise to the head of the CHUM Radio Network, to his discovery of singer/songwriter David Clayton-Thomas, and the story behind DAB radio’s failure in North America.
Read more about Duff Roman here.
Tom Armour, 79, on Dec. 7. Armour began his radio career in 1959 at CJQC Quebec City, then moved to CJSS in Cornwall, ON. He returned to Montreal in the early 1960s to work at CFCF Radio, and later CJAD, remaining a staple in the Montreal market for the next five decades. According to Armour’s obituary “Attempts to lure him to television news were graciously, but consistently declined. Tom loved radio and said that was where he wanted to be.” He retired from CJAD in 2015, as the weekend morning anchor.
Lyman Potts, 102, on Dec. 9. Potts career in radio started while he was still in high school as an announcer with CHWC in 1935, which shared frequency with CKCK Regina. In 1940, he transferred to the company’s Hamilton station, CKOC, as production manager. He moved on to CKSL London in 1956 to manage its launch, then helped CJAD Montreal owner Arthur Dupont apply for a TV licence. He was later appointed general manager of CJAD’s sister station CJFM-FM, which he helped put on the air in Oct. 1962; Lyman eventually worked his way up to become president of Standard subsidiary Standard Broadcast Productions, an umbrella for Standard Broadcast News, program syndication, and music publishing. From 1970-74, he was president of Standard Broadcasting Corp. (UK), a consultancy for applicants for commercial radio licenses. He retired from broadcasting in 1981 and formed J. Lyman Potts and Associates, a consultancy for broadcasting, recording, music services and copyright. In 1962, he convinced the Board of Broadcast Governors (BBG), which had taken over the regulation of programming from the CBC, that a station’s support of Canadian talent should be assessed by the amount of Canadian content used in its programs, and that money expended by a station to produce Canadian music programming, whether live or recorded, should be credited by the BBG in analyzing a station’s performance. Lyman went on to create the Canadian Talent Library, a non–profit trust supporting Canadian recording, that was eventually merged with FACTOR. By 1985, it had produced 265 albums containing 3,000 performances by Canadian musicians and singers. Lyman was named a Member of the Order of Canada in 1978, inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1976 and named to the CAB Broadcast Hall of Fame in 1987. He also inspired the formation of the Central Canada Broadcast Engineers Association in 1953 and was a founding member of the Canadian Communications Foundation, serving as its vice-president From 1994 to 2004.
ACTRA Toronto will present its 2019 Award of Excellence to Canadian character actor Jayne Eastwood. Eastwood has held roles on screen and stage over five decades with credits on films like Chicago, My Big Fat Greek Wedding and Hairspray. Her extensive TV work ranges from recurring roles on SCTV, King of Kensington and Bizarre, to more recent series like Little Mosque on the Prairie, Riverdale and Haven. Eastwood will be recognized at the 2019 ACTRA Awards Gala on Feb. 23.
The Canadian Media Producers Association (CMPA) has released a study detailing Frontier’s impact on the economy. The study indicates the TV drama has driven an impressive $106 million in economic activity and contributed $82.1 million to the national GDP. Production of the series, which stars Jason Momoa as an outlaw trapper, primarily takes place in Newfoundland and Labrador where the positive economic spinoffs have been felt the most. Over all three seasons of the series, the production has created 888 full-time equivalent Canadian jobs, 539 of those based in Newfoundland and Labrador. An interprovincial co-production, Frontier also had a significant economic impact in Ontario and other regions, with $22.2 million in production expenditures outside Newfoundland. Read the full story here.
Telefilm Canada’s Talent to Watch Program – Funding of First Feature Films and Narrative Web Projects from Emerging Talent will accept new project proposals from designated industry partners from Feb. 18-25. The program, formerly known as the Micro-Budget Production Program, has been expanded. Among changes to the guidelines, partners may now recommend emerging producers and writers who are not recent alumni. Only the director of the project is required to be a recent alumni from one of the partner’s production programs, an active member of the partner’s film cooperative or, in the case of a film festival partner, has participated in an incubator offered by that festival. All partners may recommend Indigenous projects that meet the defined criteria. For full eligibility details, refer to the Program Guidelines.
TSN, RDS, and UFC have reached a multi-year renewal that will see the networks continue to serve as the broadcast partners of UFC in Canada. Under the terms of the agreement, TSN and RDS are the home in Canada for 22 UFC Fight Night main cards and late preliminaries, as well as preliminary fights ahead of UFC’s 12 pay-per-view events. TSN and RDS will also broadcast Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series, focused on finding the next generation of UFC talent. TSN and RDS will also distribute UFC content beyond linear broadcasts, including across social channels and via other Bell Media platforms, such as short-form video content hub SnackableTV. The all-new Crave will also feature a UFC collection where fans can stream content on demand. TSN viewers will also have access to original UFC content from ESPN.
DHX Media has struck 10 new distribution deals for its hit CGI-animated family series The Deep, bringing the total number of broadcasters and streaming platforms to 40 globally. The news follows a 2018 BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) nomination for Best International Animation for Season 2 of the series, co-produced by DHX Media and A Stark Productions. New deals for Season 3, which was commissioned by ABC Australia earlier this year, have been struck with CBBC (UK), Super RTL (Germany), VRT (Belgium), NRK (Norway), KidsZone (Baltics), S4C (UK and Wales), SVT (Sweden), and TVP (Poland), in addition to previously announced deals with Netflix (worldwide) and Family CHRGD (Canada). DHX Media has also signed two new distribution deals for Seasons 1 & 2 with France Televisions (France) and RTP (Portugal).
Global News Toronto’s Toy Drive Live collaboration with Toronto Firefighters raised more than $255,000 in toys and cash donations. The Dec. 6 event featured a live broadcast of Global News at 5:30, in addition to talent from Corus Radio stations 102.1 The Edge, Q107 and Global News Radio 640 Toronto, as well as YTV.
CBC/Radio-Canada’s Open House & Food Bank Day in Vancouver raised a record-breaking $823,191 for Food Banks BC. Held at the CBC Vancouver Broadcast Centre on Dec. 7, more than 2,500 attendees had the chance to tour the newsroom and studios, watch live broadcasts, listen to musical performances and meet their favourite hosts and reporters. To-date, Open House & Food Bank Day has raised more than $9 million for Food Banks BC.
CBC has launched CBC Gem, the public broadcaster’s new streaming service. First announced in September, the platform boasts more than 4,000 hours of live and on-demand programming, including access to 14 CBC channels and their local newscasts across the country. It’s offered in two tiers: a Free tier and a Premium tier for $4.99/month that allows ad-free on-demand viewing and a 24/7 live stream of CBC News Network. Exclusive to Canada, both tiers offer ad-free kids programming and continuous watching across devices, in addition to French-language programs from ICI Radio-Canada. All content is available with Closed Captioning, along with Described Video for most on-demand content. Gem partnerships include Wattpad, the social storytelling platform, which will offer emerging Canadian writers the opportunity to create exclusive content for CBC Gem. Read the full story here.
Corner Gas and Corner Gas: The Movie are now in available to watch on Amazon Prime Video in over 60 countries and territories, including the U.S., UK., Australia, New Zealand, Iceland, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Kenya, South Africa, and the Philippines. In Canada, the series, movie and new Corner Gas Animated series are still available exclusively on Bell Media’s Crave SVOD service.
Google is squarely taking aim at radio with the launch of a new audio news experience beta that positions Google Assistant as an on-demand news source, featuring AI-curated playlists and the ability to skip or go back to another story using your voice. Participating news partners include The Hollywood Reporter, CNBC, USA Today, The Washington Post and the New York Times, among others. Initially rolling out to a limited number of English-speaking users in the U.S., the prototype relies on single-topic stories, segmented out from newscasts or shows, to contribute to the audio news feed. The Google News Initiative provided funding to outlets like KQED Public Media in Northern California and The McClatchy Company, which operates 29 daily newspapers in 14 states, to help offset the cost of segmenting larger broadcasts into shorter stories. Google is now looking for more publishers, who produce English-language content, to submit feeds for inclusion and sign up to try the experience. Read the full story here.
YouTube Canada is out with its list of the top trending videos of 2018, which of surprise to no one shows Canadians still have a lot of love for homegrown talent Drake, played a lot of Fortnite, and for the most part followed global viewing trends. The most-viewed video, both in Canada and globally, was Kylie Jenner’s To Our Daughter, an 11-minute film detailing her pregnancy and the birth of baby Stormi. On the music side, the year belonged mostly to Drake and Cardi B, who appear multiple times on the list of Canada’s Top Music Videos. Read more here.
Global News has launched the second season of Living In Colour, a digital series tackling the inequality faced by diverse people in modern society. Utilizing a mid-length, panel discussion format, Living In Colour sees individuals from all walks of life provide personal accounts of how race and ethnicity affects their daily lives. Hosted by Farah Nasser, anchor of Global Toronto’s Global News at 5:30 & 6, each episode in Season 2 features a different set of diverse guests sharing their experience in the context of: Cosplay and Media Representation, the Justice System, Interracial Dating, and Employment. The series expands on Global’s slate of original digital series, with digital productions RISE, Odd Jobs and Just Like Home all debuting earlier this year. The Season 2 premiere is available online at Globalnews.ca and the Global News’ Youtube channel. A new episode will be released each Wednesday through the month of December.
BuzzFeed editor Elamin Abdelmahmoud has a book deal with McClelland & Stewart. Abdelmahmoud’s Son of Elsewhere is a book of personal essays about belonging, blackness, masculinity, & Muslim-ness from the point of view of a man who immigrated from Sudan to Canada as a child, a year before 9/11. The book is set for release in Fall 2020.
Pew Research Center says when looking at online news use combined – the percentage of Americans who get their news from either news websites or social media – the web has closed in on television as a news source (43 per cent, compared with 49 per cent of adults who often watch TV news). For the first time, social media also edged out print newspapers in Pew’s annual survey of news use. One-in-five U.S. adults say they often get news via social media, slightly higher than those who cited print newspapers (16 per cent). Overall, television is still the most popular platform for news – even though its use has declined since 2016. News websites are the next most common source, followed by radio, and finally social media sites and print newspapers.
The Canadian Media Concentration Research Project has released its report looking at the network media economy, including the state of competition in the mobile wireless market, broadcast, pay and streaming TV services, and advertising across all media in Canada between 1984 and 2017. Among its highlights: Bell, Telus, Rogers, Shaw and Quebecor accounted for 73.4 per cent of the $80 billion network media economy last year, up from 72.1 per cent the year before. Bell is the biggest player in Canada by far—nearly twice the size of its closest rivals, Telus and Rogers—and single-handedly accounted for 28 per cent of all revenue last year—up by one percent from a year earlier. Telus emerged as the second largest communications and media company in Canada for the first time last year. The report also delves into Google and Facebook’s growing dominance in the advertising market, saying that while the digital giants dominate internet advertising, that does not extend to the rest of the ad market or the $80.3 billion media economy in Canada as a whole. The report concludes that “the more intractable, but seldom recognized problem is that total ad spending in Canada appears to be declining on a per capita basis and relative to the national economy.”
Canadian Heritage is contributing $4.5 million in funding to a project in Halifax that will see the city’s former World Trade and Convention Centre transformed into a multidisciplinary cultural hub that will include a film and TV production centre. The Link Performing Arts Society will also receive $5.7 million in provincial funding. The non-profit group is partnered with Culture Link, a community interest company helmed by film producer Marc Almon (Weirdos) and film and TV production veteran Rob Power. Organizations who’ve expressed interest in long-term leases at the centre include DHX Media, Sonic Entertainment, the Atlantic Filmmakers Co-operative (AFCOOP), and the Devour Food Film Festival, among others.
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is threatening legal action against the City of Toronto and Astral Media for removing a series of anti-Canada Goose bus shelter ads. PETA says the ads, which initially went up in September, were scheduled to run for four weeks, but were pulled after less than 24 hours. Featuring images of the animals captioned with “I’m a living being, not a piece of fur trim” and “I’m a living being, not jacket filling,” they were strategically placed between Canada Goose’s Toronto headquarters and the home of company CEO Dani Reiss. Astral parent company, Bell Media, says the ads violate the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards under restrictions prohibiting ads from disparaging organizations or causing public ridicule.
The Youth Media Alliance (YMA) Andra Sheffer Scholarship has been awarded to two candidates for the first time in its three-year history. Awarded annually to an outstanding student who intends to pursue a career in the field of youth content for the screen, this year’s winners are Julia Dillon-Davis, a Masters student in the Child and Youth Care program at the University of Victoria, and Nour Mallouh, a student in the Children’s Media program at Centennial College. The two laureates will receive accreditation, valued at $1,995 USD, compliments of Brunico, to attend the Kidscreen Summit in Miami, as well as a $1,500 travel grant. They will also receive accreditation for the 2019 Banff World Media Festival. The award comes with the benefit of personalized mentoring and meetings with YMA representatives, as well as the opportunity to visit the studios of CBC and TVO and meet with industry representatives.
RTDNA Canada has called for nominations for its Lifetime Achievement Award. Nominees should have at least 30 years of outstanding service and continued excellence during the course of their career in journalism or news management. Past recipients include Lynn Burry and Terry Seguin (East), Bernard St-Laurent, James Stewart and Brian Thomas (Central), Sheila Coles and Geoff Stickle (Prairies), Rick Cluff, Hudson Mack and Wayne Williams (West), and Sandie Rinaldo (Network). The nomination deadline is Jan. 11, 2019. Find more information here.
The Atlantic Journalism online entry system is now open to entries for the 2018 news year. The deadline for submissions is midnight on Friday, Feb. 1. In addition to traditional newspaper, radio, television, magazine and online categories, the AJAs has added two new categories: Excellence in Digital Journalism – Enterprise/Long Form and Excellence in Digital Journalism – Breaking News/Daily. Go to AJAs.ca for entry details, category descriptions and judging guidelines. Three finalists from each category will be announced in early April with presentation to the Gold and Silver winners on May 11 at the Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel.
The Canadian Association of Journalists (CAJ) has opened entries for the 2018 CAJ Awards program. Find more info on the award categories here. The deadline for entries is Jan. 14.
The Atkinson Fellowship in Public Policy application process is now open, funding indepth journalism that has the power to influence public policy. The deadline for letters of intent is Feb. 11. While open to research ideas on a wide range of topics, preference will be given to issues at the forefront of public policy debate. Find more info here. The winner will be announced in June at The Canadian Journalism Foundation Gala.
Time has chosen “The Guardians,” a group of journalists who have been targeted for their work, as Person of the Year. The group includes Jamal Khashoggi, the Washington Post contributor killed at the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul in October; Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, two Reuters journalists arrested in Myanmar; and the reporters of Maryland’s Capital Gazette, the newspaper where five employees were murdered by a gunman last June.
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