Bob McKenzie has signed a five-year contract extension with TSN through the 2024-25 season. Bell Media says starting next season, McKenzie will evolve his role at the network. While continuing to provide analysis for TSN for the World Juniors, TSN Draft Ranking specials, select LEAFS ON TSN games, TRADECENTRE, FREE AGENT FRENZY, and other content, McKenzie alludes in a press release to “looking forward, beyond this season, to maybe slowing down a little. This contract extension allows me to do that but ensures I’ll continue to have a prominent role and continued presence on TSN.” McKenzie first started with the network in 1986.
Bradley Karp has joined Stingray’s K96.3 (CKKO-FM) Kelowna as morning show host. Karp, who was named the 2019 Allan Waters Young Broadcaster of the Year at Canadian Music Week, left Country 93.3 (CJOK-FM) Fort McMurray in September. Karp had had been helming mornings there since 2017.
Noel Ransome has left Vice Canada after two and a half years as a staff writer and CMS editor. Ransome is pursuing freelance opportunities in the short term. Prior to Vice, he was a tech and culture reporter for Urbanology Magazine.
Teresa Wright has accepted a permanent position with The Canadian Press Parliamentary Bureau. Wright had been on contract with CP for the last 16 months after an 11-year stint with The Guardian in Charlottetown.
Catou MacKinnon is leaving CBC Quebec to take some time to be close to a sick family member. MacKinnon has been with the public broadcaster for 19 years, first in Moncton, NB, before landing in Quebec in 2004 as a reporter covering the province outside of Montreal.
VuWall, the Montreal-based video wall control and AV network management provider, has appointed Francisco Provencio as application engineer and Christian Cooper as account manager for the East Coast. The newly-created positions will provide additional resources for customers throughout the U.S. as VuWall continues its global growth. Provencio, based in Atlanta, Georgia, has more than 10 years of international experience in the AV industry, specializing in control rooms. Cooper, based in Miami, Florida, is a seasoned AV sales manager with technical expertise in control rooms, display walls, and digital signage.
Kyle Luther, a seasoned veteran in the broadcast industry, has been named the new Vice President of Sales in North America for TVU Networks, a leader in IP-based live video solutions. Luther was most recently at Grass Valley/Belden in the role of Vice President of Sales, North America. Prior to Grass Valley, he also served as Vice President of Sales, USA at Ross Video.
CBC has launched CBC Listen, a single streaming app that encompasses the content offerings of CBC Podcasts, CBC Radio and CBC Music. CBC Listen provides access to more than 200 curated CBC Music playlists, the public broadcaster’s full podcast catalogue, and the ability to listen to CBC Radio One and CBC Music radio shows live. Select shows are also available on-demand. Included in the app’s features are the ability to bookmark content for future listening and go back to recently played tracks; continuous play (the ability to pick up where a listener left off); ability to cast audio to any AirPlay or Chromecast enabled device; and a sleep timer that can be customized to the user’s listening schedule.
Stingray’s music app (4.8 in the Apple App Store and 4.7 in Google Play) is now available in Canada and the U.S. Previously available exclusively to pay-TV subscribers, the Stingray Music app, can be downloaded free or with a Premium tier upgrade for $3.99/month and at a discounted price of $0.99 for students. Recently redesigned, the app features over 200 “human-curated” channels and over 100 Canadian radio stations. The app has already been downloaded by close to five million Canadians.
Stingray has rebranded two of its small market Alberta stations HOT 93.7 (CKWY-FM) Wainwright (formerly WAYNE FM) & HOT 101.3 (CJEG-FM) Bonnyville (formerly KOOL 101.3). Both stations are also now airing The Morning Hot Tub with Mauler & Rush & Jenny, which originates from Hot 89.9 (CIHT-FM) Ottawa, in place of their local morning shows. The Morning Hot Tub also airs on Hot 105.5 (CKQK-FM) Charlottetown.
99.9 SUN FM (CHSU-FM) Kelowna has been rebranded to 99.9 Virgin Radio. The iHeartRadio station had carried the SUN FM brand for the last 22 years.
Curiouscast, Corus Entertainment’s podcast network, has renewed true crime podcast Crime Beat for a second season. Hosted by veteran Global Calgary crime reporter Nancy Hixt, Season 2 of Crime Beat launched Oct. 8 with two new episodes about the 2015 triple-murder of Blairmore, Alberta toddler Hailey Dunbar-Blanchette, her father Terry, 27, and 69-year-old Hanne Meketech. New episodes of Crime Beat will be released every two weeks.
CFUN Vancouver staff including Chuck McCoy, Red Robinson, Tom Jeffries, Roy Hennessey, Terry David Mulligan, Ed Karl, John Tanner and Doc Harris, were part of a panel discussion ruminating on the station’s history at the bi-annual RPM Lunch. Tuesday’s gathering was dedicated to the memory of Kerry Marshall, who passed away at age 70 after a short battle with brain cancer in September. Former colleague Larry Hennessey paid tribute to Marshall. The event was followed with the former CFUN personalities taking a photo on the steps of station’s original building at 4th & Cypress in Kitsilano, which is slated for demolition in the New Year.
Stingray has commissioned a Leger study on Background Music in Canadian Small Businesses that found 82% of small business owners’ lack awareness of the legal framework governing the use of music in public spaces and only 11% pay rights to music creators. 63% of those surveyed were unaware of any regulation preventing them from using a private streaming account to broadcast music publicly in their business. The study also revealed that 48% of business owners consider it important to broadcast Canadian music but only 18% said they were willing to pay tariffs to right holders. The survey was conducted among 510 small businesses (1 to 9 employees) across Canada with a physical space open to customers. Read more herre.
LISTEN: On the latest episode of Broadcast Dialogue – The Podcast, Ryan Fuss, SVP, Global Advertising Solutions, at Stingray and Dean Rutherford, VP, National Radio Sales, Bell Media, on the new AUDIO360 multi-platform audio sales solution and the future of radio and audio sales. Listen on your favourite podcast app or here.
FEATURE: In this week’s blog, Benztown CEO Andy Sannemann interviews Toronto freelance imaging producer Jordana Klein on finding inspiration, “unlearning” as a mindset, and the career advice she’d give her younger self, among other great insights. Read more here.
Sid Tomkins, 81, on Sept. 28. Tomkins began his career as a technician at CKGN-TV, moving into announcing and eventually management. He later joined CKNY-TV North Bay. He went on to become the founding president of Gateway City Broadcasters Ltd. which launched CHUR-AM North Bay in 1985. Tomkins also pursued teaching, joining Canadore College as a professor in the broadcasting program. He retired in 1994 as Dean of Applied Arts. Tomkins sat on the Board of Governors of TV Ontario (TVO) and was also involved in the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB), and the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE), among other professional organizations.
Ted Townsend, 70, on Aug. 31. Townsend, the former Chief Engineer of CHML Hamilton, joined the station in 1969, working under the late Chief Engineer Ed Victor and later Chief Engineer Bob Burger. Townsend took up the role in the late 1980s. He played a major role in the station’s move to its new and current facility in 1986. He also lent his technical expertise to construction of the technical facilities for CKRZ-FM Ohsweken, ON serving the Six Nations.
The Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) has held its annual BC Spotlight Gala, honouring exceptional BC and Canadian filmmakers. Ying Wang won the Sea to Sky Award, recognizing the work of a female key creative on a BC-produced short or feature for The World Is Bright; The Body Remembers When the World Broke Open by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers and Kathleen Hepburn won the Best BC Film honour. The Best Canadian Film Award was claimed by One Day in the Life of Noah Piugattuk by Zacharias Kunuk. Find the full list of winners here
imagineNATIVE will honour Michelle Thrush with the 2019 August Schellenberg Award of Excellence. Thrush has worked professionally in film, television and theatre for more than 25 years and is known for her roles in Arctic Air, North of 60 and Blackstone, which earned her a Gemini Award in 2011. The August Schellenberg Award of Excellence was launched in partnership with Joan Karasevich Schellenberg to honour her late husband and actor August (Augie) Schellenberg and the spirit of his work. Thrush will receive the Augie at the imagineNATIVE Awards on Oct. 27 at the TIFF Bell Lightbox.
Global Calgary celebrated 65 years on Oct. 8. Alberta’s first television station launched regular programming on Oct. 8, 1954 as CHCT-TV. Owned by Calgary Television Ltd., a consortium of Calgary radio stations CFCN, CFAC and CKXL, the “CT” in CHCT stood for “Calgary Television” and at launch was an affiliate of CBC Television. The shows produced at its studios included It Figures with Charlene Prickett, Yan Can Cook, and Stampede Wrestling. Over the years, it’s also gone to air under the call sign CFAC-TV, 2&7 Television and Calgary 7. Canwest purchased the station in 2000, which became part of Shaw Media in 2010. Corus acquired the station in 2016. Read Paul Dunphy’s reflections on 30 years with Global Calgary, here.
Global Lethbridge officially opened the doors to new studio space in the city’s downtown core this week on 7th Street South. The station moved from its original home on 28 Street North, where it had been broadcasting from since Nov. 1955. Now owned by Corus Entertainment, CJHL-TV was originally launched as a partnership between CJOC Radio and the Lethbridge Herald. Get a tour of the new studio facilities here.
Fox has acquired the syndication rights to Schitt’s Creek. The two-year deal covers all seasons of the CBC comedy, which currently airs on POP TV in the U.S. The series’ sixth and final is set to start airing on CBC in Jan. 2020, and stateside next fall. Lionsgate’s Debmar-Mercury announced the deal. The company previously bought domestic broadcast rights to the show from international distributor ITV Studios Global Entertainment.
CTV and Prairie Pants Distribution Inc. have struck a deal that will see Seasons 1 & 2 of Corner Gas Animated available for the first time in the U.S. as an IMDb Original. Starting Oct. 15, all 24 episodes of the show will be available in the U.S. on IMDb TV. In Canada, the Corner Gas franchise is exclusively available on Bell Media platforms including CTV Comedy Channel, Crave, and CTV Throwback. Season 3 of Corner Gas Animated is set to debut on CTV Comedy Channel in 2020.
CTV original series Carter returns for its second season on the newly-rebranded CTV Drama Channel with a two-episode premiere on Friday, Oct. 25. Jerry O’Connell reprises his role as Harley Carter, a former television detective turned private detective. Joining the show for Season 2 are actor Lyriq Bent (The Affair) who stars as new police chief Joyce “Joy” Warwick Boyle, and guest stars that include David Arquette, Colin Mochrie, Derek Mcgrath, and Kids in the Hall alumni Kevin McDonald and Dave Foley. Season 1 of Carter is available to stream on Crave.
HISTORY drama series Vikings returns for its sixth and final season with a two-hour premiere Dec. 4. The 20-episode sixth season will air in two parts, beginning with a two-hour premiere, followed by eight episodes airing every Wednesday at 10 p.m. ET/PT on HISTORY. The remaining 10 episodes are slated to air in 2020. Additionally, series regular Katheryn Winnick is set to direct one episode in Season 6. Accompanying the series return is special, Vikings: Worlds at War – with ET Canada, premiering Dec. 1. on HISTORY, with a repeat airing on Global Dec. 4. Carlos Bustamante takes viewers behind-the-scenes of Vikings, including exclusive interviews with the cast and a first-look at the shows new set.
TSN has announced a partnership with All Elite Wrestling (AEW) to deliver live coverage of weekly live wrestling show, AEW Dynamite, starting Oct. 2, from Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C. Among the featured wrestlers competing in AEW are Canadian superstars Chris Jericho, the inaugural and current AEW World Champion; and Kenny Omega. AEW also features members of The Elite (Cody and Brandi Rhodes, Matt and Nick Jackson, and Hangman Adam Page) as well as Jon Moxley, Nyla Rose, Awesome Kong, Dr. Britt Baker, SCU, and Dustin Rhodes, with wrestling commentator Jim Ross calling the action. TSN’s coverage of AEW Dynamite is also available for on-demand viewing for TSN and TSN Direct subscribers via TSN.ca/Live and the TSN app.
Amazon is launching FreeTime Unlimited in Canada, an all-you-can-eat content subscription service for kids ages 3-12. It offers unlimited access to thousands of kid-friendly and popular books, educational apps, videos, and games, starting at just $3.99 CDN/month for Prime members, and $5.99/month for non-members. The FreeTime Unlimited service supports up to four child profiles, customizable for each child, and will be available starting Oct. 30 on compatible Fire tablets with a free, one-month trial for eligible customers. One year of the service is also included on the Fire 7 Kids Edition, Fire HD 8 Kids Edition, and all-new Fire HD 10 Kids Edition.
The Africa Channel (TAC) has introduced its service in Canada with the launch of subscription streaming platform Demand Africa. Currently broadcast to more than 7 million homes in the U.S. and Caribbean, TAC features over 1,000 hours of English-language lifestyle and entertainment programming from across Africa and the Diaspora. Standalone subscriptions to TAC are being offered for $1.99/month. The channel is included free with a monthly or annual subscription to Demand Africa. Demand Africa is currently available on the web, iOS, Android, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Roku.
Kin Community Canada has launched Season 2 of Jessi Cruickshank’s New Mom, Who Dis? on Facebook Watch. Season 2 kicked-off Oct. 9 with an interview with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. New episodes will roll out weekly. Produced by and starring Cruickshank, the inaugural season of New Mom, Who Dis? became the #1 Canadian series on Facebook Watch, according to audience data provided by Corus.
OneSoccer is making its dedicated Canadian and international soccer channel available to bars, pubs and restaurants. Mediapro Canada has launched a 24/7 live channel for commercial establishments at a fee of $75/month or $350/year. The OneSoccer channel provides live and on-demand coverage of the Canadian Premier League, the newly-expanded Canadian Championship, home games of Canada Soccer’s Men’s and Women’s National team, and coverage of the Chinese Super League, Chinese FA Cup, Mexico’s Liga MX, Concacaf Nations League and Spain’s Primera Iberdrola women’s professional soccer league.
Bob Mills, the veteran Power 104 (CKLZ-FM) Kelowna morning man who retired this past May, is the B.C. Association of Broadcasters’ Broadcaster of the Year. BCAB handed out its annual awards, recognizing excellence in radio and television broadcasting in British Columbia, Oct. 3 in Victoria. Lynda Steele, host of the Lynda Steele Show on CKNW News Talk 980 Vancouver is this year’s Broadcast Performer of the Year. The 2019 Humanitarian Award was accepted by Allan De Genova, on behalf of the Honour House Society, which offers “a home away from home” for members of the Canadian Armed Forces, veterans, emergency services personnel, and their families, free of charge, while they receive medical care and treatment in the Metro Vancouver area. Janet Brown of CKNW and Global Okanagan won for Excellence in News Reporting in their respective Radio and TV categories, with the awards sponsored by Burli. Broadcast Dialogue publisher Shawn Smith also accepted the Friend of the Industry Award. Find the full list of winners here.
JJ Johnston, Madelyn Hamilton, and Paul KayeThe Ontario Association of Broadcasters (OAB) is presenting Fostering Engaged Effective Staff, a panel discussion at CONNECTION 2019 featuring J.J. Johnson, International Media/Management Solutions (JJIMS INC); Paul Kaye, Vice President, Product & Talent, Rogers; and business coach Madelyn Hamilton. The discussion will focus on how to foster more engaged employees and improve their workplace environment. CONNECTION 2019 takes place Nov. 7 at the Marriott Toronto Airport Hotel. Register here.
Telefilm Canada and the Canada Media Fund (CMF) are presenting the Analog conference series for audiovisual professionals. Curated by the CMF, Analog will unfold in three phases and in three Canadian cities: Montréal (Nov. 28), Vancouver (Dec. 3) and Toronto (Dec. 6). The three events will be free with a common theme of creativity and artificial intelligence. The conference series will feature David Usher, creator of the interactive work We Could Be Human: A Learning Machine that the audience will have the opportunity to try out on site. The former Moist frontman and founder of Reimagine AI, a creative studio specializing in AI, will chat with the CMF’s director of industry and market trends, Catherine Mathys. The event will also include a panel featuring artificial intelligence specialists from different backgrounds.
The Province of Quebec has announced tax measures to support print media in that province. Like the federal media bailout, the measures exclude radio and television. Tax credits available to eligible corporations include a refundable 35% tax credit, capped at a maximum of just over $26,000 per employee. Eligible corporations are defined as those that publish at least 10 times a year in print or by means of a website or mobile app, dedicated to a combination of written current affairs, culture, news of local interest, business and the economy, excluding niche publications focused on a particular topic or hobby. The province also announced a one-year extension of its refundable tax credit aimed at supporting the digital transformation of print media companies.
CBC President Catherine Tait says the public broadcaster will no longer collaborate on content with Netflix. Tait made the comments on the Content Canada podcast, which is supported by the public broadcaster, Bell Media, Rogers, Corus, Lionsgate, and The Canada Media Fund. As first reported by the Financial Post, Tait told the podcast that CBC would rather not “feed the growth” of digital giants like Netflix and Amazon. CBC currently co-produces Anne with an E with Netflix. The streaming service also airs several CBC shows globally, including Kim’s Convenience and Workin’ Moms.
Lethbridge College has received a $52,000 gift from Corus Entertainment to support the creation of an active-learning newsroom and create the Global News Journalism Award which will assist two students annually in the Digital Communications and Media (DCM) program. The funding will assist in the redesign of the college’s ‘Endeavour’ lab to shift its focus to digital media and ready students to produce journalism across multiple platforms.
Steve Vogelsang, former CTV Winnipeg sports anchor and Red River College journalism instructor, has been sentenced to more jail time after pleading guilty to a string of 2017 bank robberies in Saskatchewan and Alberta. Vogelsang has been handed an additional 18 months for two robberies in Medicine Hat. That’s on top of a five-year sentence he received in April for previous robberies in Regina and Saskatoon.
IMImobile has collaborated with the CBC to launch ASK CBC News, a text-messaging service that invites voters to send election-based questions to CBC News. The text-based service is part of the CBC Canada Votes 2019 federal election coverage, launched to create a personalized, interactive and transparent election experience for voters. The project runs through Oct. 20, allowing Canadians to launch an election conversation by texting ELECTION to 22222*, for a range of content including how to cast a ballot, how to spot fake news, and even party platform questions. It was built using IMImobile’s cloud-communications software platform, which enables brands and enterprises to facilitate two-way interactions with consumers through mobile messaging. IMImobile is headquartered in London with offices across the UK, Toronto, Hyderabad, Florida, Dubai and Johannesburg.
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