Radio & Podcast News – Rogers acquiring Pacific Content

Radio News

 

Rogers has announced it’s acquiring Vancouver-based branded podcast company Pacific Content. Launched in 2015 by co-founders Steve Pratt, Chris Boyce, and Jennifer Ouano, who are all former CBC’ers, as well as business consultant Rob Leadley, the company is a branded podcast content pioneer. Among its clients are brands like Facebook, Slack, Dell Technologies, Mozilla, Audible and Prudential. The company will continue to operate as it has, reporting to the Radio division. In a news release, Rogers says that with 26% of Canadians tuning into podcasts monthly and 18% listening weekly – according to the 2018 Canadian Podcast Listener survey – podcasting is a big part of the future of audio. Rogers Radio SVP Julie Adam says developing new audio content for mobile platforms and smart speakers is among the collaborations on the agenda. Read more here.

Nielsen Music has extended its relationship with SOCAN (Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada) to remain the exclusive provider of detailed radio airplay data from more than 500 Canadian stations. As part of the deal, Nielsen has increased coverage by adding 200 new stations to its BDSradio metrics platform. The data analytics and measurement company says increased monitoring will provide deeper insight into Christian radio formats for the first time and include additional French-language stations in Canada. SOCAN members use BDSradio data to access more detailed reporting of ISRC numbers (the code rights and royalty organizations use to track royalty payments) across a wide range of platforms, including online streaming services, for more accurate and timely data.

CHOI-FM Quebec City and 91.9 Sports (CKLX-FM) Montreal will remain property of RNC Media following an Apr. 30 CRTC decision that approved Leclerc Communication’s application to acquire the radio stations, but refused its request for an exception to the Common Ownership Policy to operate more than two French-language commercial FM radio stations in the Quebec City market. Leclerc says it won’t sell one of its other stations – WKND 91.9 (CJEC-FM) or BLVD 102.1 (CFEL-FM) – to proceed with the deal.

The CRTC has approved an application by Five Amigos Broadcasting Inc. for a broadcasting licence to operate an English-language commercial FM radio station in Listowel, ON. The station will be the first local commercial radio service in the municipality of North Perth. The station would operate at 100.1 MHz (channel 261B1) with an average effective radiated power (ERP) of 4,900 watts (maximum ERP of 8,000 watts. The station will offer an Adult Contemporary music format targeting adults 18-54. Five Amigos proposes to broadcast 126 hours of local programming per broadcast week, with 3.7 hours devoted to news, of which 2.7 hours would be local and regional news.

The CRTC has approved a new radio station for Afton Station, NS. The not-for-profit Paqtnkek Radio Society has been granted a broadcasting licence to operate a Type B Native (Indigenous) English- and Indigenous-language FM radio station in Afton Station.The station will operate at 104.5 MHz (channel 283LP) with an effective radiated power of 50 watts.

The CRTC has extended the licence terms of nearly two dozen Indigenous radio stations, including CFNR-FM Terrace, CKHQ-FM Kanesatake/Oka, Que., CICY-FM Selkirk, MB, and CKLB-FM Yellowknife, to 2022 as it prepares to undertake a review of Indigenous radio policy framework. The commission says the administrative renewals will allow for an assessment of all the stations under the revised framework.

The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) in the U.S. has filed a proposal with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) calling for more deregulation of radio and TV. NAB argues that the media landscape has changed drastically since the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and radio no longer only competes with radio. The NAB proposal suggests in the top 75 Nielsen Audio markets, a single entity could own or control up to eight commercial FM stations, with no cap on AM ownership; an owner in the top 75 markets would be permitted to own up to two additional commercial FM stations (for a total of 10); and in unrated and Nielsen markets outside the top 75, there would be no restrictions on the number of stations, FM or AM, a single entity could own.

Dr. Jada Watson

Gender Representation on Country Format Radio, a new study from the University of Ottawa’s Dr. Jada Watson, and the first to to examine Mediabase data, finds that women are getting less airplay than ever on country music radio. In 2000, women accounted for 33.3% of songs on year-end airplay reports, while last year they came in at 11.3%. In terms of spins, the ratio of men to women on country radio was 9.7 to 1. The top-played male artist Kenny Chesney had almost twice as many spins (6,047,111) as the top-selling woman, Carrie Underwood, who was played 3,182,237 times. The study only looked at American country radio, but Watson has plans to delve into Canadian country radio playlists, starting this summer. Watson will be a guest on this Friday’s Broadcast Dialogue – The Podcast.

Gord Downie

Gord Downie is the 2019 recipient of the Allan Slaight Humanitarian Spirit Award. Prior to his death in 2017, the Tragically Hip frontman dedicated the last years of his life to reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians, founding the Gord Downie and Chanie Wenjack Fund. He also served on the board of Lake Ontario Waterkeeper, working to protect Lake Ontario and the Great Lakes. Members of the Downie family will accept the award at the Canadian Music and Broadcast Industry Awards Gala in Toronto on May 9.

CJAM, the University of Windsor campus radio station, is eliminating its part-time music director position ahead of anticipated funding cuts under the province’s Student Choice Initiative. The new legislation allows students to opt out of fees for any campus service deemed non-essential, including student media. CJAM’s board of directors has voted not to renew Lauren Hedges one-year contract and won’t be replacing her. Hedges has been a host with the station since 2010. It’s expected volunteers will assume her music director duties.

Lucas Meyer

Newstalk 1010 (CFRB-AM) Toronto reporter/anchor Lucas Meyer was a guest voice on Sunday’s episode of The Simpsons. Meyer acted as the voice of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in the “D’Oh Canada” episode, which saw Lisa granted asylum in Canada following a family trip to Niagara Falls. Meyer was cast after recording a 2017 YouTube video that included impressions of the PM. Hockey Night in Canada’s Don Cherry, and U.S. President Donald Trump, among others.

Sun FM (CICF-FM) Vernon helped raise over $57,000 for the Vernon Jubilee Hospital Foundation on Apr. 26. The 16th annual Have a Heart Radiothon saw station personalities camped out in front of the Village Green Mall for 12 hours to raise funds for new equipment for newborn babies and their moms. The money will go towards replacing baby bassinets and a newborn isolette, which provides thermoregulation for babies that need additional support, among other items.

Edison Research has introduced the Podcast Consumer Quarterly Tracking Report, described as a “bespoke” first-of-its-kind research product designed to serve the ongoing needs of podcast networks, agencies, and consultancies. Comprised of a 2,000 person, 18+ sample, the report will provide charter members with a “regular checkup” on the podcast audience, what they are listening to, and the relative reach and awareness of the leading podcast networks. Edison says it will continue to provide basic consumption metrics in its annual Infinite Dial releases, but the previous Podcast Consumer report will now be subsumed into this new quarterly tracking product.

CBC Vancouver is taking a deep dive into the extradition of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou with new original podcast Sanctioned: the Arrest of a Telecom Giant. Narrated by Stephen Quinn, Sanctioned delves into the context behind Meng Wanzhou’s arrest including the technological arms race over 5G, trade wars, and geopolitics.

National Post has launched Down to Business, a new podcast tackling Canadian business. Hosted by Financial Post reporter Emily Jackson, the 20-minute podcast promises to speak to key industry players “to break down the latest developments in major stories – from cannabis to pipelines, real estate to international trade wars.” Tech entrepreneur Michele Romanow was the podcast’s first guest.


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